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The EXPO 2017 Commissioner Rapil Zhoshybayev paid a visit to the Kingdom of Thailand on August 8-9, 2016, where meetings were held with the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Energy - National Section Commissioner of Thailand in EXPO 2017 Areepong Bhoocha-oom, UN Under-Secretary General – UNESCAP Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar as well as business circles and leading mass media.
During the meeting at the Ministry of Energy, the sides discussed bilateral economic and energy cooperation between Kazakhstan and Thailand as well as participation of Thailand in EXPO 2017. Zhoshybayev told about the work being held to attract international participants and preparation progress to the Astana Exhibition. Thailand's National Commissioner Bhoocha-oom, in turn, confirmed participation of Thailand and stated that the nation intends to present its best technologies in the sphere of green energy. Thailand aims to increase the share of renewable and alternative energy sources in its energy production up to 25% by 2021. The country has rich experience in the development and use of biomass and wants to keep its leading role in the Asia-Pacific Region in terms of generating energy from biomass.
The sides also expressed confidence that in the year of 25th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Kazakhstan and Thailand, EXPO will give an additional impetus to bilateral relations and contacts at the highest level. In this context, a possibility was considered to organize the visit of a Thai Royal family member to Astana within Thailand's National Day in EXPO 2017.
Following the meeting, the sides reached an agreement on organization of a visit of the Commissioner Areepong Bhoocha-oom to Astana on August 19, 2016 to sign the Agreement of Thailand's participation in EXPO 2017.
Thailand became the 96th country that has officially confirmed participation in EXPO 2017. Estimated area of Thailand's pavilion is 734 sq.m. The Kingdom participated in all recent EXPO exhibitions, including Hanover 2000, Aichi 2005, Zaragoza 2008, Shanghai 2010, Yeosu 2012, and Milan 2015.
At the meeting with the UNESCAP Executive Secretary Shamshad Akhtar, the sides discussed terms of ESCAP's participation in the Exhibition and ways of cooperation in the field of green economy. Ms. Akhtar proposed creating a special side event of ESCAP during the Exhibition where an Asia-Pacific Energy portal, sustainable energy program and green development online trainings will be presented. The Executive Secretary emphasized significance of the initiative put forward by the President of Kazakhstan during the 70th UN General Assembly to establish an International Center on the Development of Green Technologies and Investment Projects under the UN aegis based on the EXPO. Following the meeting, the ESCAP expressed willingness to provide full assistance in establishing the Center in Astana.
During the meeting with the leadership of Thai energy and tourism companies, business circles expressed high interest to present their capabilities during EXPO 2017 in Astana, the sides considered opportunities of expanding cooperation with Thai tour operators and attraction of local tourists to the Exhibition.
Following the results of the visit, the EXPO 2017 Commissioner gave an interview to leading mass media of the Kingdom - Bangkok Post, Bangkok Post, Radio Thailand, and TNN 24.