Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and Myanmar Tatmadaw goodwill delegation pay respects to Abbot Monk of Wat Pa Baan Tat Temple in Udon Thani Province, visit Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge

Nay Pyi Taw March 9

Commander-in-Chief of Defence Services Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and the Myanmar Tatmadaw goodwill delegation,who are on a goodwill visit to Pattaya in Thailand, at the invitation of Chief of Defence Forces of the Royal Thai Armed Forces General Ponpipaat Benyasri, left Pattaya by air this morning and arrived at Wing 23 Airbase of the Royal Thai Air Force in Udon Thani Province.

The Myanmar Tatmadaw goodwill delegation led by Senior General Min Aung Hlaing and his wife Daw Kyu Kyu Hla was welcomed by Commander of the airbase Group Captain Chanawee Klinmalee and officials. Then, the Senior General took the salute of the Guard of Honour of the Royal Thai Air Force.

Afterwards, the Senior General, his wife and party visited Wat Pa Baan Tat Temple,paid respect to Abbot Monk LUANGTA SOODJAI TANTAMANOCHAYA and presented offertories to him. The abbot monk presented books on the monastery’s history as a Dhamma gift to the Senior General and his wife. The Senior General then supplicated on religious matters, including the similarity between Myanmar and Thailand in their belief in Theravada Buddhism.

Next, the Senior General and party viewed the documentary photos in the temple. Located in Udon Thani Province, Wat Pa Baan Tat Temple is green with thick forests. Small jungle animals such as jungle fowls, pheasants,squirrels and wild boars are roaming the forest.The temple was established in 1955. The abbot is famous for his religious teachings in Thailand. The meditation camps open at the temple yearly that attracts a large number of pilgrims. Thai economy declined in 1997,and the venerable abbot in collaboration with the people donated 13 tons of gold and US$-10 million in 2011 to the State. He was one of the monks worshipped by Thai King Bhumibol Adulyadej himself.

The Myanmar Tatmadaw goodwill delegation led by the Senior General and wife visited the Thai-Lao cross-border camp in Nong Khai Province on the border between Thailand and Laos. They were welcomed there by Province Commissioner Mr. Rona Chai and officials. At the meeting hall,the province commissioner and an official briefed them on Thai export of consumer goods, electrical appliances and vehicles to Laos and construction and maintenance of Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge No (1).

The Senior General expressed thanks to the officials for explaining trade activities on the border between Thailand and Laos.During his visit, he said that the border region is of importance for Thailand and Laos, showing friendly relations between both countries. Thanks to observing trading between Thailand and Laos, it contributes to trade promotion between Myanmar and Thailand. As Myanmar and Thailand operate border trade, it should strive for achieving better development.

The Senior General and party posed for group documentary photo after visiting Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge. Agricultural and livestock breeding products, personal goods, electronic products and automobiles are mainly exported to Laos through Thai-Lao cross-border camp in Nong Khai Province and raw rubber, electricity and tobacco imported from Laos. In 2018, income from trade reached 60,000 million baht. Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge crossing Mekong River is the first ever facility of its kind in linking between Thailand and Laos. Thailand,Laos and Australia jointly built the bridge with 750 million baht in 1991, and it was formally commissioned into service by His Majesty King of Thailand Bhumibol Adulyadej in 1994. The 665-metre friendship bridge comprises railroad. Thanks to the friendship bridge, both countries enjoy free and easy trade. Free trading of peoples from Thailand and Laos contributes to benefitting themselves with friendly ties and exchange of culture.

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