Swedish Ambassador issues monthly thoughts on life in Thailand

Swedish Ambassador Staffan Herrström has issued the monthly update on Facebook. The primary occasion for this is the upcoming Songkran festival, which is already beginning but initiates a public holiday from Thursday until Monday.

In it he reflects on the past month for Swedes in Thailand, focusing on subjects such as the opening of the Swedish fitness company Fitness24Seven in Bangkok, the annual meeting with the Chamber of Commerce and the ‘call the bell for gender equality’ event held at the Bangkok Stock Exchange.

The monthly issue is as follows, taken from The Embassy of Sweden in Bangkok’s Facebook page.

To All Swedes living in Thailand

It is now only a few days left to songkran, which is the vattenfestival and Thai nyårsfirande at the same time.

I’ve already participated in a couple of songkran events such as the annual songkran run in lumphini park last Sunday. And there it is not entirely wrong that there are people and sprinkle water on one along the way… it was hot that Sunday I can say.

And our consular staff took part last week in a very well-organised event that turistpolisen organised on security issues in the run-up to Road safety is, of course, always important to think about. A lot of people are on the road. Take it easy!

When I look back on mars [March, red.] month in the calendar, I can see that there has been a lot of things that have been related to Swedish companies and promotion in large.

Volvo buse launched its new chassis for buses in mid-March. A few weeks before then, fitness24seven opened its first gym in Bangkok – with plans for further expansion in the future. And quizrr working on behalf of a number of Nordic Companies had a first review of what they can offer in the form of training in sustainability for Thai suppliers. Consistently very inspiring to participate and say a few words from the embassy horizon.

And the annual meeting of the chamber of commerce is, of course, something that I always want to be Always as nice and with interesting speakers (this year former editor-in-Chief of Bangkok post khun pichai chuensuksawadi).

Equality and entrepreneurship are a theme that we are increasingly active with. Last year, IKEA launched its new pappaledighetskoncept at a press conference together with the embassy on women’s day.

This year we had taken these issues a step further in close cooperation with the Bangkok stock exchange and un women. On International Women’s day on 8 March, we jointly organised an event on the theme of ‘ call the bell for gender equality ‘, we held on the premises of the Bangkok stock exchange, and had a very strong understanding of the importance of equality for private companies – Swedish as well . Un women did some interviews in the context currently being published on social media: “the business case for gender equality”. we will try to continue working on that theme too.

Our Främjandearbete in Laos took some substantial steps forward over the past few weeks through a skogsevent in vientiane at the beginning of March where Swedish experience was presented in an excellent way by vivianne gillman at business Sweden – followed by a visit to Sweden by Deputy Prime Minister sonexay siphandone. Very successful according to the Stockholm reports.

A completely different kind of promotion was carried out in connection with the great book fair in Bangkok, when we were was by the barnboksförfattaren Carl-Johan Forssén Ehrlin (“the rabbit who so badly wanted to fall asleep” M FL…). Very exciting. He’s translated into 46 languages! Now also thai.

The biggest event of the month for the embassy was our great workshop, arranged by the guidance section in close cooperation with the united nations economic commission for Asia and Oceania, Pacific. The theme was “building resilience through participation”, and we had in the order of 150 participants, primarily from our various partners in regional development cooperation. This is an annually recurring event; I participated for the third time, and it has always been both worthwhile in itself – and exciting to see how our various partners are encouraged to network with each other.

This year, however, we had taken a step forward with the cooperation with the Pacific. It meant that we were able to bring in experiences, conclusions and messages from our workshop to the work of the un’s th birthday party, SDG:s, that escap and its member states are pursuing in the region. For example, we had the opportunity to convey this directly to the region’s ministerial meeting, which took place in the days after our workshop.

I now have a few calmer days ahead of me (including a Sweden visit). But in may, the calendar is full again. I’ll get back to you on that.

Have a really nice songkran!

Best wishes

Staffan Herrström

The Songkran festival falls with the Thai New Year and is known for turning the entire country into a giant water fight with Supersoakers and buckets of water, hopefully cooling down the citizens in one of the warmest parts of the year.

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