Military R&D pact gets the nod

Military R&D pact gets the nod

A staff member of the Shangri-La Hotel in Bangkok secures the national flags of the Asean countries in preparation to receive delegates for the Asean Summit, which will be held in the capital this weekend. Pawat Laopaisarntaksin
A staff member of the Shangri-La Hotel in Bangkok secures the national flags of the Asean countries in preparation to receive delegates for the Asean Summit, which will be held in the capital this weekend. Pawat Laopaisarntaksin

Asean countries have agreed to work together on the research and development of military vehicles, Defence Ministry spokesman Kongcheep Tantravanich says.

The deal was agreed at the Asean Defence Industry Collaboration meeting on Wednesday, he said. It is one of four commitments for cooperation.

Others are military study and training, exchange visits for the defence industry, and maritime cooperation, Lt Gen Kongcheep said.

Thailand and Myanmar are also keen on working together on computer engineering, he said.

The spokesman was speaking after the leader of the Asean Defence Industry Collaboration Consultative group visited Deputy Defence Minister Chaichan Changmongkol at the Defence Ministry yesterday. Gen Chaichan was assigned by Defence Minister Prawit Wongsuwon to attend the meeting on his behalf.

The deputy defence minister indicated it is important for Asean members to share knowledge and expertise about the defence industry, he said.

The joint research and development should usher in personnel and equipment innovations that can be used together by the bloc's members, for both security and humanitarian assistance purposes, Lt Gen Kongcheep said.

In another development, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment will chair the 30th Meeting of Asean Senior Officials on the Environment (ASOEN) during the Asean Summit over the coming weekend, said Sopon Thongdee, the ministry spokesman.

He said the event would be a good opportunity for Thailand to raise the issue of natural resources and environmental conservation and seek cooperation in this regard with other Asean countries, he said.

He said the past two meetings of ASOEN have ushered in the Bangkok Declaration on Combating Marine Debris in the Asean Region, adding the declaration would be endorsed in the summit meeting.

Meanwhile, security has been ramped for the summit, which will be held at the Athenee Hotel in Bangkok, says national police chief Chakthip Chaijinda.

He said some groups have been under close watch but he believes the event will be trouble-free.


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