Dear members of the European Association for Business and Commerce (EABC), representatives of the European and Thai business community, colleagues and friends.
I am honoured to have been elected President of the EABC in 2020, and I wish to express my gratitude and appreciation to our Board of Directors and to our Office for the time and effort they have devoted to the EABC, as well as to our membership base, for their enormous support throughout the years.
As the representative association of not just one country, but rather of the union of many, the EABC plays a unique role in the business community. For all intents and purposes, the EABC acts as the European Chamber of Commerce in Thailand, covering the entire European Economic Area (EEA), as well as the U.K. My vision for EABC is to leverage the diverse yet unified character of our membership to serve as the leading voice for European business in Thailand—the go-to organization for those doing business in Thailand, and also for those looking at Thailand as a prospective market for expansion. It is the renewed commitment of the EABC to promote a spirit of cooperation both within and without the Association in order to strengthen business networks and provide opportunities for growth to its members.
Advocacy is the core function of the EABC. In the past years, our organization has worked on a number of advocacy areas, known as the Top Set, encompassing Ease of Doing Business, Thai-EU FTA, Business Continuity Support, economic recovery, service sector liberalization, automotive roadmap, educational reforms, free movement of goods, energy security and sustainability, digital transformation, promoting rule of law, circular economy and achieving Thailand 4.0, among others. In the coming months and years, the EABC will continue to promote dialogue on regulatory and economic reform, upholding inclusiveness and a pluralism of ideas
In these uncertain times, as many of the world’s economies are brought to the brink of collapse, we must strive to provide more value to our members, augmenting our thought leadership and enhancing content creation and distribution. I envision an EABC that hosts more quality events, such as conferences, symposia, and workshops, in order to serve as a platform for industry experts to share valuable insights with our members. In pursuit of attracting foreign direct investment to Thailand for the benefit of both the national economy and EABC members, we will endeavor to strengthen our members’ engagement with other business associations and foreign trade bodies, working closely with the bilateral chambers of commerce in Thailand. Diversity, unity and inclusion are now more important than ever, and I warmly encourage all existing members to invite new members and continue to engage in our activities.
2020 has been an unexpectedly challenging year, plagued by an unprecedented pandemic whose effects will most likely continue to impact our lives and businesses for months to come. In a particularly troubling time, the EABC looks to work in tandem with its members and local partners to strengthen the Thai economy. Now is the time to rally, stand united and help our members in any way we can.
I thank you for the confidence that you have placed in me and I look forward to serving you, the European and Thai business community, for the years to come.