St Petersburg University has welcomed a delegation of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the National Assembly of Thailand to discuss their cooperation.

— SPbU is a partner with over 450 universities globally, among them are top universities in Thailand: Chulalongkorn University and Thammasat University, — said Deputy Rector for International Affairs Sergei Andrushin in his opening speech. — It is an honour for us that Queen Sirikit and Princess Chulabhorn Mahidol were awarded a title of Doctor Honoris Causa of St Petersburg University in 2007 and 2011. Just as these events fostered academic collaboration between the countries, so did SPbU’s breakthrough developments: Research Park, updated education programmes, and its unique status to name but a few, that was the focus of the presentation about SPbU by S.V. Andrushin.

They discussed various aspects of mutual work (in particular, an agreement on education collaboration between SPbU and Ministry of Education of Thailand) and exchange academic programmes. The Chairperson of the Committee on Foreign Affairs Ms Balaiban Sampatisiri offered internship programmes for students in the National Assembly of the Kingdom of Thailand. The delegation was interested in discussing knowledge-intensive business projects, innovation and research cooperation, and told that Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn was willing to visit the Research Park at SPbU during her visit to Russia in autumn. Moreover, the delegation offered to celebrate the Songkran Festival at the University, Thai New Year in mid-April.

— I am delighted to visit SPbU after so long. I appreciate your warm welcome, — said Ms Balaiban Sampatisiri. — This year we celebrate the 120-anniversary of diplomatic Russia-Thailand relations and Thailand is preparing to a number of official visits to Russia. Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn is planning to visit St Petersburg during her trip to Russia in autumn, as she is much concerned with education and academic affairs.

The delegation visited the University’s Inner Yard where there is a sculpture of Phra Aphai Mani, a hero of the epic poem by Thailand's best-known poet Sunthorn Phu, which was established in SPbU in December in 2012. They continued their discussion at the Thai Office at SPbU, where Ms Balaiban Sampatisiri was offered a book “King Chulalongkorn in Russia” written by SPbU researchers in the Oriental Studies Prof Boris Melnichenko and Assistant Prof Sergei Trifonov, Department of History of the Far East.