By The Nation
“With millions of Thais of Chinese descent, Chinese New Year has always been a time to celebrate with the family and togetherness across Thailand,” noted Yuthasak Supasorn, TAT’s governor.
“This year, locals and international visitors are invited to join in 13 major official celebrations nationwide, each of which is home to large, established Chinese communities,with spectacular food and cultural performances taking centre stage.
“The People’s Republic of China and the Kingdom of Thailand have long enjoyed deep relations, with 2018 marking the 43rd anniversary of diplomatic ties, and the TAT, the Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China, and the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in Thailand have co-hosted Chinese New Year celebrations since 2003.
Highlights include a New Year greeting ceremony held with high-level ministers on February 15 to further strengthen the strong relationship between Thailand and China. The ceremony will take place at the China Cultural Centre, and will be led by Weerasak Kowsurat, minister of tourism and sports, and Yang Zhijin, deputy minister of culture from the People’s Republic of China.
An official opening ceremony of the Chinese New Year celebrations in Yaowarat – the historic home to Bangkok’s Chinese community – on February 16, will be presided over by Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn, and will feature Thailand-China cultural exchange performances by 135 performers from Fujian, Hainan, Inner Mongolia, Shandong, Heilongjiang, Zhejiang, Hunan, Shanxi and Hubei.
Highlights include traditional Chinese dances and music, martial arts, acrobatic performances and Chinese opera puppets. The cultural exchange performances will then tour Chiang Mai, Udon Thani, Songkhla (Hat Yai) and Phuket.
Locals and international visitors can also enjoy a celebration of food culture. Fresh from cooking at the recent G20 Summit in Hangzhou, a chef from the World Federation of China Catering Industry will be on hand to create Southern Chinese delicacies that are fused with flavours familiar to Thai palates. A cooking demonstration will also be held to mark the beginning of the Chinese New Year, when families traditionally gather to enjoy food and being together.