Apec meet fails to wow public

Apec meet fails to wow public

Despite fanfare, many are unaware of summit's purpose and benefit

Limousines for Apec participants were parked in Klong Toey district, Bangkok. (Photo: Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)
Limousines for Apec participants were parked in Klong Toey district, Bangkok. (Photo: Wichan Charoenkiatpakul)

As the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Apec) Summit draws near, the Bangkok Post has surveyed people on their awareness of the meeting and their views on it.

Most respondents showed little awareness of the forum and couldn't see how it relates to their day-to-day life; many also questioned whether it was worth hosting here in Thailand.

Riwachara Rungcharoen, 57, a tour guide, said she really had no idea what the Apec Summit is all about, although she regularly uses social media to receive news.

She couldn't really assess the worthiness of the meeting and tended to view it as another international meeting that possibly requires a lot of money to fund.

Her wish is that the government communicates in a way that is easier for laymen to understand what will happen at the meeting and how people will benefit.

Ranyacha Phetcharat, 53, a driver, meanwhile, is aware the meeting is intended as a forum to discuss the economy and new trade and business opportunities.

Methaphon Manothawon, 20, a student, admitted he had never heard of the Apec Summit. It sounded important, but he had no idea how people would benefit. Above all, he said, he couldn't trust this government.

Natcha Singsamit, 20, a student, said she had learned from social media that the Apec Summit is a meeting of international leaders who will discuss economic stimulation measures.

Darika Thap-udom, 21, a student, said she had no idea when and where the summit would be held, neither did she believe the meeting was worth organising.

Since the military mounted its coup, no one in charge was accountable anymore.

Phiyata Sararit, 20, a student, described the Apec Summit as a meeting on economic cooperation in Asia from which only the government and big business will benefit, while ''the grassroots will still struggle to make ends meet as they usually do.''

Oraphan Chaimonkon, 26, unemployed, said she understood the summit will deal with economic issues and trade in Asia and the Pacific. She added she is optimistic about the economic situation now Covid is no longer such a threat.

Patcharaphon Khrongbun, 26, a vendor, said he believed the summit will benefit many, including foreign investors.

No respondents said they were worried about the possibility of the meeting being disrupted by protests, as they were sure security has been arranged.

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