...Thailand’s Bid to Host World Expo 2020 Placed on the National Agenda
Thailand’s ambition to host the World Expo 2020 has been included in the national agenda.
The decision was made by the Cabinet, during its meeting on 7 February 2012, when the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was assigned to serve as the core agency in the campaign for hosting the World Expo 2020.
A national committee, chaired by the Foreign Minister, will be formed to work out strategic and action plans for the campaign. The Government will call a meeting of related agencies to discuss ways to translate the plans into action. Among the related agencies are the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Commerce, the Prime Minister’s Office, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Transport, and the Office of the National Economic and Social Development Board.
The World Exposition, also known as the World Expo, is one of the world’s oldest and largest international events; it takes place every five years and each time it runs for six months. Since the first exposition, which took place in London in 1851, member countries have taken turns being the host when it joined the 1862 universal exhibition. Thailand became one of the first three Asian nations to participate in the exposition, along with China and Japan.
The Thai government on May 16, 2011 submitted a letter of intent to the Bureau of International Expositions in a bid to host the World Expo 2020 in Ayutthaya province, Thailand’s former capital. Ayutthaya has been cited as a city where industry and agriculture coexist and where tradition and innovation are seen going hand in hand.
Thailand is the only country in Asia that has been successfully nominated as an official candidate to host the World Expo 2020. It was among the five countries submitting a proposal to host this event. The four other countries include Turkey, Russia, Brazil, and the United Arab Emirates. The voting on the bid will be held in late 2013. The winner will have to gain the majority vote from 157 members of the Bureau of International Expositions.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs informed the Cabinet that the campaign for the bid would last two years, from 2012 to 2013. During the period, Thailand needs to submit progress reports on its preparations for hosting this event.
The Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau attended the General Assembly of the Bureau of International Exposition in November last year for the presentation of Thailand's bid to host World Expo 2020. It also proposed themes for side-events under the overall concept of "Redefine Globalization: Balanced Life, Sustainable Living", and highlighted progress in the awareness-building campaign for the bid. This was Thailand's second opportunity to join the General Assembly to present progress in the country’s bid to host World Expo 2020.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs added that the campaign was an urgent task and needed a clear policy from the Government.