Surin Pitsuwan, former ASEAN Secretary General has pointed out that Thai women should play an important role in establishing the ASEAN Community.

During his speech at the International Women’s Day event in southern Songkhla province, Surin said that due to the fact that Thailand is a foundation member of the ASEAN Community, the value of local products and services will increase in the bigger market, as will the importance of eight skilled areas of labor which will become free-flow within the member countries of the AEC, starting at year's end.

Women as mothers will play an important role in preparing and educating their children as AEC children, who will encounter other languages and gain knowledge about ASEAN which will raise their awareness and their opportunities.

Surin said that in Songkhla which shares a border with Malaysia, knowledge of the Bahasa language is essential. An example being Sadao border region which is designated one of the five Special Economic Zones (SEZ) of Thailand.

Language diversity is not an issue in the South of Thailand; where people, especially women should also learn and know the Malaysian language well to be able to teach their children, he added.-VNA