The National Guard State Partnership Programs (SPP) are designed to establish long term relationships in which U.S. States and their partnered nations share best practices and expert knowledge in a range of areas.
The Governor and The Adjutant General established Washington State’s SPP by proclamation on March 27, 2002 in order to establish a long-term relationship between the Washington State Military Department and the Kingdom of Thailand.
The State of Washington has long-standing cultural and economic ties with the Kingdom of Thailand. As of 2000, Thailand imported 467 million dollars worth of commodities from Washington State. Washington was the 3rd leading exporter to the Kingdom of Thailand, following Texas and California. Washington’s 2001 census data reported that 347,000 Asian residents (including Thai) are currently residents of Washington.
The Washington Military Department and the Kingdom of Thailand share “best practices” for military support to civilian authorities, emergency management, disaster planning, port security, HAZMAT/WMD response initiatives and airport security, among others. The SPP also facilitates economic, commercial, social and cultural government interactions in addition to military-to-military expert exchanges. Multi-level Army and Air Force familiarization exercises provide yet another platform to share effective practices and techniques.
Today, 50 states, two territories, and the District of Columbia are partnered with 59 countries around the world. The SPP actively supports the U.S. military’s mandate to shape the international security environment.