Kra Canal (or Klong Thai) will connect the Gulf of Thailand to Andaman Sea across southern Thailand, creating a strategic sea route and casting a new look for the region. (Photo: mothership.sg)

Bangkok (VNA) – The Thai government said it is reviewing the feasibility of the Kra Canal (or Klong Thai) project which will connect the Gulf of Thailand to Andaman Sea across southern Thailand, creating a strategic sea route and casting a new look for the region.

Government spokesman Sansern Kaewkamnerd said that the government is studying the pros and cons of the project, including the implications for national security and budget expenditures.

“There are still other problems in the area, therefore they must be priotised”, he said, urging people in the southern Thailand to exercise caution over messages supporting the project.

In early 2016, former Prime Minister Tanin Kraivixien submitted an open letter to Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-O-Cha, urging him to review the Kra Canal project. In the letter, Tanin said that the project had been suspended earlier due to international relations and security-related issues. However, countries in the Asia-Pacific region have expressed interest in studying new maritime routes.

The cost for the Kra Canal project is estimated at 20 billion - 30 billion USD and it could take 10 years for completion. However, it can shorten sea journey between the Middle East to East Asia by 1,200 kilometres. - VNA