Phuket readies for IMT-GT meeting

PHUKET: Final preparations were being made today (Sept 15) ahead of the 28th Indonesia–Malaysia–Thailand Growth Triangle (IMT-GT) Ministerial Meeting, which is taking place at the Saii Laguna Hotel in Phuket tomorrow.

Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew chaired a meeting earlier today attended by 14 southern provinces of Thailand, 11 northern and western states of Malaysia and 10 upper provinces from Indonesia’s Sumatra island.

The meeting was to prepare for tomorrow by clarifying the key directives to be addressed as well as summarising the outcome of the last IMT-GT conference, held in Putrajaya, Malaysia in August 2021.

According to the IMT-GT website, “Various key updates and initiatives across the IMT-GT sectoral areas will be highlighted during this meeting among others; endorsement of the new IMT-GT Implementation Blueprint (IB) 2022–2026, cooperation on rubber among the three countries, as well as further discussions to accelerate the economic recovery process in the subregion through the IMT-GT Themed Trail to promote the IMT-GT region as a single tourism destination.”

Additionally, today’s meeting covered topics such as the Southern Distribution Center Thung Song project and the Satun Geopark project between Langkawi Geopark in Malaysia, Satun Geopark in Thailand and Lake Toba Geopark in Indonesia.

Also discussed was development of the Green City project, which the IMT-GT believes can contribute significantly to sustainable growth targets. For Thailand, this would focus on Green Transport initiatives in both Krabi and Phuket areas.

Governor Narong also highlighted Phuket’s aspiration as a representative of Thailand to host the Specialized Expo 2028, stressing that the province has progressed to the second round of selection and is therefore the sole represenative from the Asean region.

He emphasised how hosting the occasion could truly benefit the IMT-GT and encouraged attendees at the conference to subsequently support Phuket’s candidacy moving forward.

The IMT-GT started as an early attempt at economic liberalisation & integration in Asean. It was formally endorsed by Indonesia’s President Suharto, Malaysia’s Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohammad and Thailand’s Prime Minister Chuan Leekpai in 1993.

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