President Tan conveys best wishes to Thailand's new King, invites him to visit Singapore

President Tony Tan talks to the media in Tromso, Norway at Scandic Ishavhotel on Oct 14, 2016.
President Tony Tan talks to the media in Tromso, Norway at Scandic Ishavhotel on Oct 14, 2016.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - Singapore President Tony Tan Keng Yam has conveyed his best wishes to Thailand's King Maha Vajiralongkorn Bodindradebayavarangkun on the latter's ascension to the throne on Thursday (Dec 1) and has invited the new king to visit Singapore.

"On behalf of the people of Singapore, I extend my best wishes to Your Majesty on the most auspicious occasion of Your Majesty's ascension to the throne," Dr Tan said in a letter to King Maha Vajiralongkorn on Friday.

"Your Majesty has been a source of solace and strength for the Thai people since the passing of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej.  I am confident that Your Majesty's reign will usher in a new era of peace, prosperity and progress for Thailand.

 "Singapore and Thailand share a warm and close relationship forged over many decades. In the years ahead, I have no doubt that the bilateral cooperation between our two countries will continue to strengthen and yield benefits for our peoples.  I would like to extend an invitation to Your Majesty to visit Singapore at your earliest convenience," Dr Tan said.

King Maha Vajiralongkorn, 64, assented to taking the throne on Thursday evening, following an audience with National Legislative Assembly president Pornpetch Wichitcholchai, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha and Supreme Court president Veerapol Tungsuwan.

The coronation is expected to be held only after King Bhumibol's cremation sometime next year. An elaborate funeral pyre will be built on the royal field next to the palace, where mourners from all over the country have gone to pay their respects since his death on Oct 13.