InfoQuest (September 18, 2019) -- Ms. Onmon Subthawitham, director-general of the Department of Trade Negotiations (DTN) of the Ministry of Commerce (MOC), revealed that Mr. Jurin Laksanawisit, deputy prime minister and commerce minister of Thailand, plans to attend the 16th China-ASEAN Expo (CAEXPO) in China on September 20, 2019. Taking this opportunity, he will meet with Han Zheng, deputy prime minister of China's State Council, who oversees the overall operation of Chinese economy. The objective is to realize closer bilateral economic ties, and boost trade and investment cooperation between the two countries, particularly, to expand the export of Thailand's farm produce to China, including rice, rubber, cassava, and fruits.
Meanwhile, he will lead representatives of relevant farm produce enterprises of Thailand to attend the expo, aiming to make preparations for market research and expanding export to Chinese market.
Currently, China is a key export market for Thailand's agricultural products. The amount of Thailand's farm produce imported to China keeps growing each year. That should be attributed to China-ASEAN FTA, which reduces the tariff of over 90 percent of products to zero; MOC has launched various trade promotion events in Thailand, China, and other ASEAN countries to create trade opportunities for private enterprises on both sides, and facilitate them in establishing business ties.
The CAEXPO will be held in Guangxi, added Ms. Onmon. Guangxi is a key gateway for China to connect with ASEAN, and the only province in China that borders ASEAN on both land and sea. It also serves as a key channel for Thailand's farm produce to be transported to China. Currently, half of ASEAN's fruits sold in China are imported via Guangxi.
In 2018, Thailand exported a total of over 1 billion U.S. dollars of fruits to China, a record high. In the first seven months of 2019 (January-July), Thailand exported a total of over 1.1 billion U.S. dollars of fruits to China.
In 2019 (January-July), the bilateral trade between Thailand and China recorded 44.9 billion U.S. dollars. That included: Thailand's export to China 16.3 billion U.S. dollars, and Thailand's import from China 28.6 billion U.S. dollars. The major exports of Thailand to China include: plastic particles, rubber products, fresh and frozen fruits, chemicals, computer and parts, natural rubber, and cassava products. The main products Thailand imports from China include: electrical equipment and components, machinery and parts, household appliances, chemicals, computer and parts, rolled steel, steel products, and auto and parts.
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