Our Bureau
11:57 AM, December 22, 2016
Thailand Seeks Chinese Expertise In Small Arms, Security Equipment
The People's Army Air Force pilots and Royal Thai Air Force pilots pose for photos at the end of the combined exercise, Nov 24, 2015. (AFP PHOTO)

Thailand has expressed interest in building military cooperation with China, particularly in development of small arms and security equipment.

Thai defense ministry spokesman Kongcheep Tantravanich was quoted as saying by Reuters Wednesday that Defense Minister Prawit Wongsuwan had talks with his Chinese counterpart, Chang Wanquan about building military production facilities in Thailand, during his visit to Beijing last week.

"We will also look to their expertise in producing small arms and other security-related equipment like drones," he said.

Thailand has also held talks with Russia about setting up similar production facilities, said Kongcheep, without giving details.

Thailand, a United States ally by treaty, has been seeking to expand its military ties with Beijing and Moscow ever since its relationship with Washington turned sour over a May 2014 military coup in Bangkok.

Thailand has held a joint military exercise with China in 2015 for the first time ever. Thailand also bought tanks from Beijing and signed a multi-billion-dollar contract to buy its first submarines from China in the same year.

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