South committee to build on Saudi ties

South committee to build on Saudi ties

Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon chairs a meeting of the strategic committee for the development of southern border provinces on Thursday. (Photo: Wassana Nanuam)
Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon chairs a meeting of the strategic committee for the development of southern border provinces on Thursday. (Photo: Wassana Nanuam)

The government's strategic committee for the development of southern border provinces is pushing for a raft of development projects aimed at strengthening ties between Thailand and Saudi Arabia.

A meeting of the committee on Thursday approved the projects after the two kingdoms agreed to re-establish full diplomatic ties following Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha’s visit to the Middle Eastern country in January, said Maj Gen Patchasak Patirupanont, an assistant spokesman for Deputy Prime Minister Prawit Wongsuwon.

The meeting, chaired by Gen Prawit, approved a project to build a jetty at an inlet in Songkhla’s Thepha district to prevent coastal erosion.

The committee also greenlit a livestock community project for the Halal Economic Corridor to help sustain the livelihoods of 750 farmers.

In addition, the committee agreed to continue push forward a project to promote a more multicultural society in the three southernmost border provinces on Narathiwat, Pattani and Yala as well as four districts in Songkhla.

Other approved projects included developing an ancient tunnel in Betong reserved forest in Yala into a new tourist attraction, constructing roads connecting Sadao customs checkpoint in Songkhla with a checkpoint in Malaysia to promote the development of a special economic zone and promoting the Hajj pilgrimage in Saudi Arabia.

The meeting agreed to hire another 339 university graduates who have been affected by the southern unrest to work as volunteers, taking the total number of volunteers to 2,458.

Gen Prawit instructed the committee and related agencies to push forward the projects and support the participation of local leaders and people to enhance multiculturalism and equality.


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