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Thailand formally requests VPA negotiations with the EU

The Thai Ministry of Foreign Affairs has officially requested the commencement of negotiations of a Voluntary Partnership Agreement with the EU, in a letter received by the Delegation of the EU to Thailand on 18 February. 

Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra referred to VPA negotiations in a press statement on her 6 March meeting with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso.

High-level officials from the EU and Thailand met informally on the sidelines of the CITES Conference of the Parties in Bangkok in March to prepare for the official launch of the negotiations. A working-level meeting, attended by more than 30 representatives of the three working groups set up by the Thai National FLEGT Negotiation Committee, was held at the Royal Forestry Department on 15 March to introduce parties to each another and establish communication lines.

The high-level meeting to launch the official negotiations is expected to take place in April.