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05BANGKOK5271 AMBASSADOR’S FTA MEETING WITH DEPUTY PM

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“38668”,”8/17/2005 3:45″,”05BANGKOK5271″,

“Embassy Bangkok”,”UNCLASSIFIED//FOR OFFICIAL USE ONLY”,””,

“This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

 

“,”UNCLAS BANGKOK 005271

 

SIPDIS

 

SENSITIVE

 

STATE FOR EAP/BCLTV AND EB

USTR FOR WEISEL AND COEN

TREASURY FOR OASIA

COMMERCE FOR 4430/EAP/MAC/KSA

 

E.O. 12958: N/A

TAGS: ECON, ETRD, EFIN, TH, US-Thai FTA

SUBJECT: AMBASSADOR\’S FTA MEETING WITH DEPUTY PM

 

1. (SBU) On August 16, Ambassador Boyce called on Deputy

Prime Minister and Commerce Minister Somkid Jatusripitak to

express USG concerns about the slow pace of FTA negotiations,

explain that an FTA with the U.S. must be a single

undertaking (the Thai-Japan FTA model is not an option for

us), the necessity of structuring the FTA on a positive list

basis, and the express requirement in Trade Promotion

Authority for an FTA labor chapter.

 

2. (SBU) Somkid replied that now that the Thai-Japan FTA

talks \”are finished\”, he would devote his attention to RTG

talks with the U.S. and had already scheduled a meeting of

his team for next week to discuss ways of accelerating the

pace of negotiations. He did not directly respond to the

Ambassador\’s specific points, but pointed out that he and his

staff present in the room had all spent a lot of time in the

U.S.: \”you know us and we know you; both of us need to

understand each other.\” Regarding the negative vs. positive

list issue, Somkid intimated that perhaps some sort of

compromise formula could be found.

 

3. (SBU) Comment. For the first time Somkid indicated that he

would fully engage in our FTA \”now that I have time,\” and

insisted it was important to his government to complete these

negotiations. We suspect that his active participation in the

ultimately successful (from the RTG viewpoint) talks with

Japan may have encouraged him to play a more active role.

Others have told us that one of the reason\’s he was moved

from the Finance Ministry in the recent government reshuffle

was to make him more directly responsible for FTA matters. We

believe that we should quietly work with him on issues that

prove too difficult for the Thai negotiators and test his

stated inclination to engage and solve problems.

BOYCE

Written by thaicables

July 7, 2011 at 5:46 am

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