[Overview] Bangkok is the capital city and the political, economic, cultural, educational and transportation center of Thailand. Located in the lower reaches of the Chao Phraya River, the city is 40 kilometers from the Gulf of Siam, covers an area of 1,569 square kilometers, and has a population of 8 million.
[Politics] Bangkok is Thailand's only provincial-level municipality directly under the central government. It is governed by the metropolitan council and the metropolitan administration. The incumbent Governor Aswin Kwanmuang took office in October 2016 for a term of four years.
[Economy] Bangkok is the economic center of Thailand and also a major regional economic hub of Southeast Asia, second only to Singapore. The services sector is its pillar industry, contributing approximately half of the total value of the services sector of Thailand.
[Culture and Education] Bangkok is the center of higher education in Thailand, being home to such prestigious universities as Chulalongkorn University, Thammasat University, Bangkok University and Naresuan University. The city has more than 400 Buddhist temples, the most famous of which are the Grand Palace, the Temple of the Emerald Buddha, the Temple of the Reclining Buddha and the Temple of the Dawn, as well as 55 mosques. Bangkok also hosts United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP) and a number of other UN agencies.
[Relations with Beijing] Beijing and Bangkok officially became sister cities on May 26, 1993. The two cities have had close interactions and fruitful cooperation in such areas as legislation, urban construction and cultural development in recent years.
Legislation: In 2001, Beijing Municipal People's Congress and Bangkok Metropolitan Council signed a memorandum to become sister councils and established a mechanism of regular communication and mutual visits so as to strengthen exchanges in legislation and create a sound legal environment for cooperation between the two sides in various other fields.
City Construction: In 2019, the third tallest building in Thailand, which is a landmark of Bangkok by the Chao Phraya River, was delivered. It is a highlight of Beijing's efforts to support the Belt and Road Initiative as Beijing Construction Engineering Group is the co-investor and EPC contractor of the project.
Culture: In 2008, part of the torch relay for the Beijing Olympic Games was held in Bangkok successfully as tens of thousands of local people rooted for the Olympic flame. The event spread the Olympic spirit and reinforced the friendship between the two cities. In 2013, a delegation of young table tennis players from Bangkok visited Beijing and had exchange events with students from Beijing No. 66 Middle School. In 2017, the two cities co-hosted the “Flower of Friendship: Photo Exhibition of Beijing ASEAN Cultural Tour” in Bangkok.