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Trade fair a chance to improve Thai relations

Trade fair a chance to improve Thai relations

Thailand and Cambodia are making moves to repair trade relations as 30 of Thailand’s provincial commerce departments hold a three-day trade fair in Phnom Penh’s Diamond Island Convention Center this week, according to Jiranan Wongmongkol, director of the Foreign Trade Promotion Office (FTPO) at the Thai embassy.

The fair is part of an effort to restore and promote trade activities between Cambodia and Thailand, after the slowdown in trade between the two nations caused by a political row over the past few years, she said.

Bilateral trade between the two countries rose 58.16 per cent to US$1.13 billion in the first quarter of the year compared to $716.69 million for the same period last year, according to the data from FTPO.

Cambodia’s total exports increased 54.91 per cent to $85.43 million in the first quarter of the year compared to $55.15 million for the same period in 2011, while the total amount of imports from Thailand rose 58.43 per cent, worth an estimated $1.04 billion, up from $661.54 million for the same period last year.

The fair was the result of the efforts of 30 provincial commerce directors, not the Thai government, to strengthen the trade relations with Cambodia, Jiranan Wongmongkol said.

“It is the first time they held this fair in Cambodia because they want to resume and promote the exchange of trade between our two nations,” she said.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Kunmakara at [email protected]

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