The Chart Pattana and Kla parties have formally announced the formation of a political alliance to compete in Thailand’s next general election and in the hope of becoming a major party in the future.
Korn Chatikavanij, leader of the Kla Party said, however, that the political alliance is not a “merger” of the two parties and that Kla remains a political party. Korn and Suwat Liptapanlop, chairman of Chart Pattana Party, were present at the event held to announce their alliance to the media.
Both political identities have a strong connection to Hua Hin and Cha-Am. Korn has a residence in Cha-Am and a small plot of land in Pranburi. He says ‘’it is a privilege to take time out from the hustle and bustle of Bangkok” and “I can safely say Hua Hin/Cha-Am is my favourite destination of choice, I’m a beach man.”
He recently addressed the Royal Coast Riviera Club on the subject of ‘Thailand’s future in the wake of Covid-19’. He said the concept of a joint development area between Pranburi and Cha-Am (the Royal Coast) makes ‘’sense as a great joint development area’’, he also advocated for more local autonomy.
A recorded press Q & A from that event may be heard at https://www.facebook.com/Surf102.5/videos/1492039944568038
Suwat is a very significant figure in the development of Hua Hin, often appearing to open events or new developments, especially at the Blúport Resort Mall or True Arena Sports Club. His daughter Proudputh Liptapanlop, as Executive Director of the Proud Group, is in charge of her family’s portfolio of leisure and hospitality investments which include Hua Hin properties such as the InterContinental Resort, Holiday Inn and Vana Nava Water Park.
Stressing the importance of economic issues, as Thailand faces its worst economic crisis, due partly to the prolonged COVID-19 pandemic, Suwat said that the alliance can capitalise on the extensive economic expertise of Korn, formerly finance minister in the government of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva.
He said that he hopes the cooperation will give them the strengths needed to guide the country through the crisis.
Suwat said that the two parties have not yet decided whom they will nominate as the candidate for premiership in the next election, as he stressed the party’s policy guidelines, which emphasise creativity, compromise, no conflict with other parties and the upholding of national interests as paramount.
Korn, meanwhile, said that it didn’t take him much time to decide to form an alliance with the Chart Pattana Party, as both parties share a common interest in economic issues and in the need to improve the livelihoods of the people as priority.
The Kla Party was established in February 2020, after Korn was defeated by Jurin Laksanawisit in the race for the Democrat Party’s leadership after the resignation of Abhisit Vejjajiva.
Chart Pattana is a long established party, with its main stronghold in the north-eastern province of Nakhon Ratchasima. Its popularity has declined in recent years and it won just four constituency seats in the 2019 general election.