When the Thai Finnish Chamber of Commence (TFCC) invited to a children-friendly twenty years anniversary celebration Thursday the 30th of April they were not exaggerating. Clowns, magicians, face-painters and balloon-shooters filled the ballroom at Centara Grand along with a bunch of exited children. But it was not only a children’s party. Since 1989 the chamber has been a place for networking and social gatherings for the Finnish expats in Thailand, and the adults celebrated the anniversary with Welcome Vappu Drinks.
The party included a traditional buffet made by Finnish Chef Mr. Janne Ollikainen, which included specialities from the home country like Sima, Tippaleipä, Graavilohi, Silli, Blini and – of course – shots of the world-famous Finnish vodka.
Even though 20 years of organized business relations to Thailand, the TFCC didn’t seem to think that the anniversary only should be a trip down memory lane. At his welcome speech the president of the Chamber, Matti Ranin, launched the new logo of the chamber.
“We have achieved a lot over the years, but we rather want to look ahead than back in time. The new logo represents the renewed drive that hopefully will characterize the Thai-Finnish chamber of Commence in the future” he explained.
But it was not all-business talk, after the dinner Matti Ranin hosted a lucky-draw lottery, where prized from Finn Air and Nokia among others were at stake.
Only two provinces to go
The anniversary also marked the unofficial farewell to the Finnish ambassador Lars Backström, who is being transferred to Beijing in a few months.
“It is an extraordinary emotional night for me personally as me and my wife really are going to miss this fantastic country and the good relationship the Finnish Chamber of Commence, we have has throughout the years” the ambassador said in his speech. But the emotional goodbye did not stop Lars Backström to challenge the guests.
“During my period as an ambassador I Thailand I have visit 58 of the 60 provinces of the country, and hopefully we have seen all before we leave. Each of them are very beautyfull in its own way, and I hope that you will follow my example” he stated.