Tokyo (VNA) - Japan and Thailand held a high-level meeting in Tokyo on July 18 discussing the promotion of multilateral free trade and strengthening cooperation in infrastructure building.

According to Japanese news agency Kyodo, during the meeting, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that it is important to build a new regional economic order – referring to the ongoing negotiations involving Japan, Thailand and 14 other Asia-Pacific countries towards an ambitious free trade deal, called the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

With Thailand having expressed its readiness to join the 11-member Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade accord, Suga also said such a framework is closely linked to Japan’s free and open Indo-Pacific strategy.

Thailand’s delegation, including a number of economic ministers, was led by Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak.

Citing an agreement on Japan’s support to build a high-speed railway system connecting Thailand’s capital and the major northern city of Chiang Mai, reached in the previous meeting last year, Somkid said the project “helped bring Japan and Thailand closer together.”

Suga also expressed Japan’s gratitude for Thailand’s donations worth 5 million THB (150,000 USD) in the wake of recent deadly torrential rains that devastated western Japan and claimed the lives of more than 200 people. -VNA