Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida met with his Thai counterpart Don at the foreign ministry in Bangkok on May 1, 2016. In the meeting, Kishida asked Don to improve the climate for investment in Thailand by Japanese corporations. “Investment by Japanese companies contributes to enhancing bilateral relations,” said Don. “The Thai government would like to support [Japanese corporations] in every respect.” It was the first visit to Thailand by a Japanese foreign minister in six years, since August 2010. Kishida is the first Japanese foreign minister to visit Thailand since the military regime was established by a coup in May 2014. Japanese companies have complained that the country’s tariffs are arbitrary, and that the requirement to hire Thais is strict. “Thailand is an indispensable part of the international supply chain for Japan’s economy,” said Kishida at the announcement of the joint statement. “I asked [the Thai government] to further improve the investment climate.”
Don explained to Kishida the roadmap to restoring civilian government, including a referendum on a draft for a new constitution, and the progress to date. Kishida expressed hope for the early establishment of a civilian government.