New Russian consulate opens in Phuket deepening Thailand-Russia ties

Photo courtesy of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation

Sergey Lavrov, the Foreign Affairs Minister of Russia, unveiled the new Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Phuket at Royal Phuket Marina. The high-profile event, which took place yesterday, marked a significant development in the evolving diplomatic bonds between Thailand and Russia.

Lavrov arrived at Royal Phuket Marina at 4pm where Phuket Vice Governor Amnuay Pinsuwan, flanked by a host of dignitaries from both nations, welcomed him. Thailand’s Foreign Minister Don Pramudwinai was part of this delegation, alongside Asi Mamanee, Director-General at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Department of European Affairs, and the founder of Royal Phuket Marina, Gulu Lalvani.

Beyond the official opening, the event was also significant as a congregation of influential figures from government bodies and the private sector. Members of the thriving Russian community in Phuket were also present to be part of this diplomatic milestone.

Lavrov said…

“Today’s event adds a bright page to the 126 year history of diplomatic relations between our countries. It is difficult that at this moment we have managed to create a strong foundation of Russian-Thai relations, allowing us to build our cooperation reliably, in a mutually respectful way, regardless of the fluctuations of the geopolitical environment.

“To develop active political dialogue, trade-economic cooperation, cultural and educational exchanges without Thai partners. Let us not forget that one of the key tasks of diplomacy is to protect the rights and legitimate interests of Russian citizen abroad.”

Lavrov expressed his commitment to an active political dialogue and fostering trade and economic cooperation, as well as cultural and education exchanges, with his Thai counterparts.

Emphasising his point, Lavrov highlighted how Thailand is a popular vacation choice among Russians. Phuket, in particular, is favoured due to its beautiful landscapes, warm climate, and friendly locals. With the reopening of direct flights, there has been a noticeable increase in Russian tourists to Thailand since October last year. More than a million Russian visitors have made their way to Thailand, with Phuket serving as the holiday destination for half of them.

Lavrov is optimistic about the further growth of these figures. He laid out the plans to smoothly implement the usage of the Russian payment system – World, a move which would boost the influx of tourists.

According to Lavrov, while Phuket is known worldwide as a resort, for Russian diplomats, the working hours will be quite intense. Apart from performing consular functions like ensuring the interests of Russian citizens, they will foster the establishment of business links and promote cooperation between the Russian and Thai regions. A key early objective is to form brotherhood ties between Phuket and Kamchatka Krai in Russia.

The opening of this Consulate General in Phuket is seen as an important step in consolidating Russia’s diplomatic presence in Southeast Asia, and Lavrov confirmed plans for further diplomatic missions in other nations across the region.

The Consulate General of the Russian Federation in Phuket is situated at the Royal Phuket Marina complex on Thepkrasattri Road, Koh Kaew. Operational since 2020, it is responsible for catering to eleven provinces including Phang Nga, Krabi, and Satun, among others. The post of Consul General is held by Vladimir Sosnov.

Read more Phuket News HERE.

Phuket News

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Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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