- Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Thailand)
Kingdom of Thailand
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
กระทรวงการต่างประเทศ Ministry overview Formed 14 April 1840 Jurisdiction Government of Thailand Headquarters Sri Ayutthaya Building, 443 Sri Ayutthaya Rd. Phaya Thai, Ratchathewi, Bangkok 10400 Annual budget 7,587,338,300 Baht (2008) Minister responsible Kasit Piromya, Minister of Foreign Affairs Ministry executive Theerakun Niyom, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry Website www.mfa.go.th
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Thailand (Thai: กระทรวงการต่างประเทศ; RTGS: Krasuang Kan Tang Prathet; Abrv: MFA) is the principal government department in charge of foreign relations in Thailand. The ministry is headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs; who is also a member of the Cabinet of Thailand, he is appointed by the Prime Minister. The Ministry is primarily in charge of formulating and executing foreign policies for the Kingdom of Thailand. The Ministry is also in charge of managing and maintaining Thai diplomatic missions around the globe. The current Minister of Foreign Affairs is Kasit Piromya.
Prior to the creation of the Ministry, much of the country’s foreign relations were handled exclusively by the absolute monarchs of the day. During the Kingdom of Ayutthaya foreign relations were handled by the “Krom Phra Klang” (Thai: กรมพระคลัง) (or the Treasury Department). The Head of the department was known as "Phra Khlang" (Thai: พระคลัง) and occasionally referred to as "Berguelang" or "Barcelon" by foreign authors. The famous 18th century Siamese Ambassador to France: Kosa Pan, was the younger brother of King Narai’s “Phra Klang” Kosathipodi. Soon after a sub-department was created primarily to deal with foreigners called: "Krom Tha" (Thai: กรมท่า) (Port Department).
During the Bangkok Period most of these features were retained. Until the reign of King Mongkut, who in 1840 founded the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Siam; which was administered directly by the King. The responsibilities and roles of the old “Kroms” were shifted to this ministry. Chao Phya Bhanuwong became the first Foreign Minister of Siam in 1871, appointed by King Chulalongkorn.
In 1881 Prince Devavongse Varoprakarn was appointed to replace him. Known today as the father of Thai diplomacy he reorganized and modernized the Ministry to meet 19th century standards. The Ministry was then permanently established at Saranrom Palace, east of the Grand Palace. The Ministry was divided into 7 divisions:
- Senabodi Division (Ministerial Division)
- Under-Secretary Division
- Translation Division
- Reception Division
- Accounts Division
- Filing Division
- Diplomatic Division
- Consular Division
After the Revolution of 1932, the Ministry came under civilian control and the Minister was made a member of the constitutional government of Siam. The first Minister under this new system was Phraya Sri Visarn Vacha.
See more at: Foreign relations of Thailand
Most of the offices of the Ministry were moved to a new grand building complex; Sri Ayutthaya Building, 443 Sri Ayutthaya Rd. Phaya Thai, Ratchathewi, Bangkok in 1992. This building is on the same premise where the Office of the South East Asia Treaty Organization (SEATO) used to stand.
- Office of the Minister
- Office of the Permanent Secretary
- Department of Consular Affairs
- Department of Protocol
- International Development Cooperation Agency
- Department of Economic Affairs
- Department of Treaties and Legal Affairs
- Department of Information
- Department of International Organization
- Department of European Affairs
- Department of American and South Pacific Affairs
- Department of ASEAN Affairs (for members of the ASEAN group)
- Department of East Asian Affairs
- Department of South Asian, Middle East and African Affairs
- Foreign relations of Thailand
- Cabinet of Thailand
- List of Government Ministers of Thailand
- Government of Thailand
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Official Website in Thai
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs - Official Website in English
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