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Thai premier to join Mekong Subregion leaders for talk with Japan

BANGKOK, Nov. 7 (Xinhua) -- Thai Premier Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha is scheduled to join leaders of other Mekong Subregion states for talks with Japan in Naypyidaw, the Myanmar capital, next week.

The top leaders of Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand will discuss with Japanese Premier Shinzo Abe about varied development projects for the respective Mekong Subregion countries during the 25th ASEAN Summit in Naypyidaw, scheduled from the upcoming Sunday until next Thursday, said officials of the Thai Prime Minister's Office on Friday.

Gen Prayuth will join ranks with Myanmar President Thein Sein, Lao Premier Thongsing Thammavong, Cambodian Preimer Hun Sen and Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung in the so-called Mekong- Japan Summit, the sixth of its kind since 2008.

The talk will focus on the sustained infrastructural and logistical development schemes for which Japan has offered to provide financial and technical support in favor of the Mekong Subregion states, namely Myanmar, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand, according to the Thai government officials.

Besides, it will involve Japan's sustained support for the subregion's human resources development and environmental preservation as well as international trade and investment promotion plans, they said.

In particular, Japanese industrial entrepreneurs will be encouraged to use Thailand as a regional manufacturing base from where they may expand their ventures into neighboring countries on sustainable basis.

The planned setting up of "special economic zones" along shared borders of the Mekong Subregion countries as well as international cooperation in the management of natural disasters and strengthening of the agricultural sector will also be discussed.

The approaching Mekong-Japan Summit in the Myanmar capital will apparently coincide with Thailand's declared plans to build and expand rail and logistics systems including those which will link this country with neighboring states such as Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia.

China also plans to build a high-speed rail system from the southern province of Yunnan to Thailand's northeastern region via northern Laos while dual-tracked rail and motorway projects will be built to connect Bangkok with major Thai provinces and the neighboring states.

The Thai capital is planned to become a regional hub for logistics, aviation and medical services as the 10-state ASEAN bloc is becoming the so-called ASEAN Economic Community next year.

Besides, Thailand, Myanmar and Japan plan to revive the delayed Dawei special economic zone in which an industrial estate, deep- sea port and power plants will be built with a road and railway linking southern Myanmar with western Thailand.

China's Asia Infrastructure Investment Bank and Japan's Asia Development Bank look to provide financial support for those Mekong Subregion development projects.

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