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China-Thailand ties to turn strategic

Updated: 2013-10-12 07:09
By Kavi Chongkittavorn ( China Daily)

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang's visit to Thailand is expected to raise Thai-China ties to a higher level, especially in strategic matters.

The change in Thailand's diplomatic outlook is new and still evolving, with Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra leading the push. Thailand realizes that this is the time to strengthen friendship with China, especially because the United States changed its Asia policy in November 2011.

Two factors explain this shift in paradigm. First, US President Barack Obama had to cancel his planned trip - for the third time - to the region indicating the diplomatic constraints the White House faces today and will do so in the future. Developments within the US have taken a heavy toll on Washington's diplomacy in Asia. Despite the "pivot to Asia" policy of the US, the Middle East has been the focus of Washington's diplomacy for some time now, heightened by Secretary of State John Kerry's enthusiasm.

China-Thailand ties to turn strategic