Unlikely Biden will make APEC meeting in Thailand

Thailand’s Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson reported that they are trying to find a way for US President Joe Biden to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) leaders’ meeting in Bangkok after he made it known it clashes with a family wedding.

The US President will attend the G20 conference in Bali on November 15 and November 16 but will probably miss the APEC meeting in the Thai capital on November 18 and November 19. In his place, Biden will most likely send Vice President Kamala Harris.

Following the G20 summit, Biden will return to Washington. The 79 year old had planned to travel to Bangkok for a one-day stopover.

Thailand’s Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson, Tanee Sangrat, announced both parties are looking to find a way for President Biden to attend the meeting but it looks unlikely.

The APEC meeting is an intergovernmental forum dedicated to promoting free trade and investment, economic growth and development, and cooperation in the Asia-Pacific region. It operates based on non-binding commitments and open dialogue.

Dr PojAramwattananont, Chairman of the APEC CEO Summit 2022 and ABAC Thailand Member, and KasemsitPathomsak, Executive Director of the APEC CEO Summit 2022 and ABAC Thailand Alternate Member, both expressed confidence in terms of the themes, organisation and business insight support for the landmark summit.

Dr PojAramwattananont said that the Thai private sector is ready to welcome business leaders to the summit under the theme “Embrace, Engage, Enable.”

“This year’s summit will be the first for prominent economists and business leaders to meet in person. More than 10 leaders from the APEC member
economies will give keynote speeches on topics that are of high public interest.

“The programme will also include panel discussions among thought leaders and distinguished speakers on the issues that will help chart the direction of the world’s economy. It is a great opportunity for Thailand to play host to the remarkable trade and investment convention.

“The summit will be a chance for the Thai private sector to display to the world our potential, whether in food security, investment, tourism, or finance. For this reason, the business sector is encouraging young entrepreneurs around Thailand to take part in organising the event. This outreach is crucial as the younger generations will play a key role in driving the country’s economy in the future.”

The last in-person APEC summit was held in Papua New Guinea in 2018. It appears the US has form for a non-attendance by a US President. In 2018, the then US President, Donald Trump, did not attend the meeting either and instead, Vice President Mike Pence represented the US.


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Bob Scott

Bob Scott is an experienced writer and editor with a passion for travel. Born and raised in Newcastle, England, he spent more than 10 years in Asia. He worked as a sports writer in the north of England and London before relocating to Asia. Now he resides in Bangkok, Thailand, where he is the Editor-in-Chief for The Thaiger English News. With a vast amount of experience from living and writing abroad, Bob Scott is an expert on all things related to Asian culture and lifestyle.

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