THE ASEAN Para Sports Federation (APSF) delegation, led by President Major General Osoth Bhavilai, paid a courtesy call on Thailand Minister of Tourism and Sports , Phiphat Rachakitprakarn as part of its preparation towards the organisation of the 13th ASEAN Para Games in Nakhon Ratchasima in 2026.

The preliminary meeting between APSF and the 2026 Games stakeholders, which took place at the Minister’s office here, touched on various aspects of the Games including establishing close cooperation in key functional areas.

The 2026 Korat Games’ stakeholders include the Thailand government, Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT), Nakhon Ratchasima Province and the National Paralympic Committee (NPC) of Thailand. 

In the meeting, the Minister expressed appreciation over APSF’s proactive initiative to embark on early preparation efforts to ensure that the Games is held in a highly standard and regulated manners as required in any international multi-sports Games. 

The 13th ASEAN Para Games Korat 2026 is scheduled from 20-26 January at various venues around Korat. The Games returns to the province after 19 years, since the first hosting job in 2007 which saw 14 sports contested then.

Also present at the meeting were APSF Secretary-General Senior Colonel Dr Wandee Tosuwan, Governor of Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT) Dr Kongsak Yodmanee, NPC Thailand President, Lt. Nayanobh Bhirombhakdi and Deputy Governor of Nakhon Ratchasima Province Charin Thongsuk.

NPC Thailand President Bhirombhakdi will also act as the APSF Board of Governors chairman by virtue of Thailand being hosts of the 2026 Games. 

The technical aspects of the Games including structure, organisation and requirements were also presented to ensure that the Games are well-coordinated apart from the need to expedite the establishment of a Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the Games. 

Nakhon Ratchasima, located 260km from Bangkok, is a large province locate on the northeastern plateau, acting as a gateway to other provinces in the northeast. The province is rich in Khmer culture and has a long history.

“APSF looks forward to a strong collaboration and understanding with the Thailand Government and all stakeholders of the Games. The Thai government has given its fullest commitment and endorsement,  and I believe with its great record in the hosting of many international and regional Games and sporting events, Thailand is capable of building and continuing the success of the last three Games cycles in 2015 (Singapore), 2017 (Kuala Lumpur), 2022 (Solo, Indonesia) and 2023 Games in Cambodia,” said Maj Gen Bhavilai.

Korat has proposed 19 sports for the 13th ASEAN Para Games, including making e-sports an official medal sport in the Games. E-sports was introduced as a demonstration sport in Phnom Penh, in June.

“It was a fruitful and conducive meeting… on behalf of our member nations, we presented the requirements including proper direction and strong collaboration, to ensure that the Games is held is the best possible atmosphere and in the true spirit of ASEAN Para community camaraderie,” said Senior Colonel Wandee after the meeting.

“We have yet to finalise on the sports as there are certain requirements and procedures which need to be fulfilled including the Expression of Interest (EOI) exercise which will be conducted by PSF soon,”  she added. 

The election of new-term members of APSF Executive Committee (EXCO) will also take place in Korat during the 13th ASEAN Para Games 2026. 

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