To the world, Thailand's face is that of its beloved Monarch, His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Admired for his efforts to advance the well-being of the Thai people, particularly those in rural areas, he has provided inspiration far beyond Thailand's borders. The more than 3,000 projects he has initiated have caught the attention of foreign governments and global development experts seeking innovative solutions to poverty, uneven distribution of income and related social problems. Those contributions have been recognised in a multitude of honours-including more than 30 international awards and 20 plus honorary degrees-bestowed upon him for his work. Time Magazine has also featured him on its covers.
More recently, the US-ASEAN Business Council, Inc. in a resolution from the Executive Committee recognized His Majesty's constant work to improve the education, health and welfare of the workers and people of Thailand as well as promote and nurture ties to governments throughout the world. In addition, the United Nations has honoured His Majesty with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Human Development Lifetime Achievement Award 2006 "for his dedication to develop and industriously uplift the living condition of Thai people all through his 60-year reign".
The award was presented by Mr. Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations during his visit to Thailand on 26 May 2006.
An extraordinarily gifted man in widely varying artistic and cultural fields, his mission to improve the lives of all his people has taken him to all corners of the land. For up to eight months each year, His Majesty used to travel to remote areas to discuss face-to-face with his people their needs and, together with them, devise strategies to resolve their problems and difficulties, often utilizing his personal funds to finance the projects.
His subjects' loyalty is founded not just on respect for the institution of the monarchy but on him personally and the many works he has undertaken on their behalf. In brief, he embodies all that is best in Thai culture and traditions, a symbol of continuity from Siam's storied past, and of its future.
The year 2006 marks the 60th Anniversary of His Majesty's Accession to the Throne, making him the present world's longest-reigning Monarch. World Monarchs and Royalties will travel to Bangkok to join with Thais in a grand celebration to pay tribute to His Majesty's achievements and dedication.