Thai Prime Minister Field Marshal Thanom Kittikachorn, on Tuesday, 29th December, officially opened the 60-mile (96 km) highway built with Australian aid to link the provincial capital, Tak, with Mae Sot on the Burmese border.
LS Ribbon with Thai & Australian flags
MLS Guests inside tent
MS Buddhist monks chanting prayers
MS Australian & Thai engineers who built road
MLS Thai Premier and others towards ribbon
MS Flags (Australian and Thai)
MLS Premier cuts ribbon
MCU Premier & others
MCU Guests & officials
MS Premier & others along road.
CU Inscriptions on stone
MLS Various tracking shots of road and vehicles along road
Initials CM/DW/VH/1243 CM/DW/VH/1257
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Background: Thai Prime Minister Field Marshal Thanom Kittikachorn, on Tuesday, 29th December, officially opened the 60-mile (96 km) highway built with Australian aid to link the provincial capital, Tak, with Mae Sot on the Burmese border.
Marshal Thanom ceremonially cut the ribbon across this end of the road in the presence of Australian Ambassador to Thailand, Mr. T. Critchley and other heads of foreign diplomatic missions who were specially invited for the occasion.
Australian flags fluttered side by side with Thai flags in the mid morning breeze as the Thai leader thanked Australia for contributing the services of road engineers and equipment worth five million Australian dollars towards the total road cost of 15 million dollars (6.2 million sterling).
Following the ceremony, the Thai Prime Minister and the Australian Ambassador travelled up the two-lane modern highway winding through rugged hills to Mae Sot.
A team of Australian engineers from the snowy mountain authority had to cut through densely-jungled hills and fill deep gullies to complete the road in three years and seal it to withstand torrential monsoon rains. It replaces a dirt track which was open to traffic from each end only on alternate days.
The road is expected to open lush, virgin land to such crops as rice, corn and tobacco as well as to cattle raising.
The highway ends at the Thai bank of the narrow Thaungyin River. It will also serve as a terminus in Thailand of the Asian Highway project to link Singapore with Teheran.