Đỗ Thị Thảo: from beauty queen to special guest at CLMVT 2019 Forum

The Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Việt Nam (CLMTV) Forum 2019 wrapped up on June 24 in Bangkok, Thailand. Prime Minister of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha attended the opening of the two-day forum with leaders of regional countries and hundreds of participants including professors, representatives of associations and economic groups in the CLMVT as well as speakers and special guests from both inside and outside the region.

Chan-o-cha called for CLMVT countries to work together on development to enhance their competitive advantages and renew thoughts and creativity. The countries should support the start-up ecosystem, young generation and private enterprises. They should co-operate to resolve technological, political and geographic challenges facing the countries. He said CLMVT countries have become an important factor in the new value chain of Asia.

Prime Minister of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha delivered a speech at he opening ceremony of CLMVT Forum 2019

On the sidelines of the forum, a reporter from Van Hoa Doanh Nhan magazine interviewed Ms. Do Thi Thao, Chairman of Vinamcom Vietnam Group, who was a special guest of Thailand's Ministry of Commerce at the forum. She is known as Miss Beauty Industry APHCA 2019 and Ambassador Queen of Lumiere International 2018.

Thao, will people be surprised to see you in this role at the forum?

Actually, doing business and trade promotion or participating in international conferences and forums, especially in Japan, has been my regular work for years. I suppose people paid attention to my role as Miss Beauty Industry APHCA 2019 and Ambassador Queen of Lumiere International 2018 instead of the aforementioned work.

Đỗ Thị Thảo, Ichikawa Tao attend the CLMVT Forum 2019.

So you did not attend the forum under you role of Miss Beauty Industry or Ambassador Queen?

Of course, as I mentioned above, I regularly did this work before achieving the tittles in the beauty industry. I have a business in Spa and cosmetics. I am chairman of the management board of a company providing high-quality Vietnamese labourers to Japan. I also consult and support Japanese companies and individuals who pay attention to investment and trade relations with Việt Nam through non-governmental channels. My company is a prestigious unit and has been well known in Japan for years. This is why I received the invitation to attend the CLMVT 2019 Forum from the Thai Ministry of Commerce as a special guest and partner. I had a direct flight from Japan to Bangkok to attend the forum.

Đỗ Thị Thảo (centre) took a photo with Prime Minister of Thailand and chairman of ASEAN Business Association

I was surprised with your talent and roles you hold. Could you offer your assessment on the role of CLMVT countries with Japan and and vice versa?

It is a broad question. I could give an assessment about some issues related to works which my partners and I are doing. I think globalisation and economic integration have been vital for every country that wants to catch up with current development trends. From the angle of a business, products must obtain criteria in terms of international quality to penetrate into other markets or regional and global association chains. It is also required that they regularly update and apply new technologies and increase co-operation.

Prime Minister of Thailand Prayut Chan-o-cha, said CLMVT countries play an extremely important role in the new value chains of Asia. It means that not only Japan but also other developed economies such as the US, China, Russia, Germany, France, India and South Korea consider CLMVT an important partner in the economic sector and other issues. Japan and the other countries need to co-operate with Southeast Asian and CLMVT countries.

Đỗ Thị Thảo took a picture with Government leaders, associations, groups and leading investment funds

What are your targets for the market?

I know Japan has a good relationship with CLMVT countries, especially in trade issues. I saw there were regular conferences, trade fairs and trade promotion programmes in Viet Nam and Thailand with the participation of all economic components, forming a good foundation for mutual understanding, trust and substantive co-operation. Japanese businesses work very carefully and attach great importance to prestige. So if the partner has established good relationships in the past, there will be many advantages. Therefore, I wish to gain understanding and increase strategic relationships with my close partners in Japan for this potential market.

Đỗ Thị Thảo, Ichikawa Tao attended the CLMVT 2019 Forum.

Were you as successful as you expected?

It was very successful! I got not just interesting knowledge, analysis and evaluation from leading professors, researchers and leaders of big groups in the world such as Google and DHL but also the plans of economic policymakers and leaders of CLMVT countries. In addition, I had an opportunity to meet and work with  high-ranking leaders from organisations and associations, ministers of CLMVT countries and CEOs of big economic groups both inside and outside the region. I reached many agreements with suitable partners. I was delighted due to the achievements.

Did international delegates recognise that you are a beauty queen?

There were many people who knew and some who did not. Many people were very happy when they asked to take a photo together and exchange work. I found it very interesting when many delegates who did not know that I am a beauty queen said that they have never met such a beautiful international delegate a a high-level conference.

However, I believe our looks are just the form our parents and creators gave us. And the intellect, experiences and knowledge we gain in every stage of life are most important no matter who you are.

Thank you, and I wish you the best of luck!