Promoting Role of Vietnamese Community in Northeast Thailand in Bilateral Relations

With a long history of formation and development, the Nghe An community in Thailand has the potential to be a bridge between Nghe An and Thailand, contributing to the overall development of the province and the friendly relations between the two countries.
December 11, 2023 | 11:21

Formation and development process of Vietnamese community in Northeast Thailand

The Vietnamese community in Thailand has a long history of formation and development, and closely linked to the development of Vietnam and the Vietnam-Thailand relationship.

According to researchers from Chulalongkorn University, Vietnamese people have been in Ayuthay since the 17th century.

Currently, the Vietnamese community in Thailand has more than 100,000 people, living in all provinces of Thailand, with the largest concentration in the Northeast region. They are mostly of Thai nationality.

Promoting Role of Vietnamese Community in Northeast Thailand in Bilateral Relations
A Vietnamese market in Thailand.

Directions for promoting the role of the overseas Vietnamese community

To continue promoting the role of the Vietnamese community in Thailand to become a bridge for the Nghe An-Thailand relationship in the current period, we need to pay attention to the following issues.

First: Promoting the role of Vietnamese Associations in Thailand

According to statistics, in the Northeast region there are 23 Vietnamese Associations under the General Association of Vietnamese in Thailand.

All Associations are recognized by the government. They regularly have programs to unite the community and preserve traditional Vietnamese culture.

Vietnam-Thailand Friendship Association of Nghe An province was established in 2002 with hundreds of members. In the coming time, the Association needs to continue to build close relationships with Vietnamese associations in Thailand, especially associations in the Northeast region.

The Association needs to organize practical activities such as establishing and exchanging information with Thai partners, strengthening relations with overseas Vietnamese, and organizing friendly exchange activities on the occasion of major holidays of the two countries.

In addition, the Association needs to act as a bridge for cultural, sports, tourism, trade, and investment cooperation activities between Nghe An and Thai partners.

Second: Promoting the role of historical relics related to Vietnamese people in Thailand

In the Northeast region of Thailand, there are currently three provinces with relics associated with the places where President Ho Chi Minh participated in revolutionary activities in 1928-1929.

In particular, at Thai-Vietnamese Friendship Village, most of the people living there are Nghe An people.

In Northeast Thailand, there are also many Vietnamese relics such as the clock tower built by Vietnamese people before repatriating back to their homeland in the period 1960-1964, Vietnamese temples and churches. These are key tourist destinations of the Northeast provinces.

To strengthen Nghe An-Thailand tourism cooperation, the province's tourism industry needs to build tours connecting destinations in Thailand with Nghe An.

Third: Strengthening cooperation in education and training

Currently, Thailand is supporting five Vietnamese universities to teach Thai language.

This partly meets the needs of Vietnamese students to learn Thai, and contributes to providing human resources for Thai businesses and companies operating in Vietnam.

In Nghe An, Vinh University had cooperation, student exchange and research programs with a number of universities in Northeast Thailand. However, the scale and effectiveness of cooperation are not commensurate with the potential.

On March 20, 2023, Dr. Anek Laothamatas, minister of Higher Education, Science, Research and Innovation (MHESI) had a meeting with Vietnamese Ambassador to Thailand Phan Chi Thanh.

Accordingly, MHESI supported the plan to establish the center for Vietnamese language and education in Thailand and Vietnamese language teaching programs in universities in Thailand.

This is a good opportunity for universities, colleges, and vocational schools in Nghe An to strengthen cooperative relationships with schools in Northeast Thailand in areas such as Vietnamese language training, student and lecturer training, and scholarship exchange.

Fourth: Promoting cooperation in the economic field

To promote business connection activities between Nghe An province, foreign countries and Thailand particularly, it is necessary to promote people-to-people diplomacy and continue to strengthen bilateral cooperation between Nghe An province and Thai provinces.

The governments of the two countries create favorable conditions for Nghe An province to become twinned with the provinces of Northeast Thailand, especially provinces where a large number of Nghe An people live.

Nghe An and provinces in Thailand need to establish regular information channels to support businesses in connecting, finding partners, and introducing products, especially OCOP products.

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