Khaw Sim Bee Na Ranong and Shared History of Malaysia-Thailand Relations

The “Penang Story Symposium:

Khaw Sim Bee Na Ranong and Shared History of Malaysia-Thailand Relations: From the Past to Future Cooperation” and
“Thailand-Malaysia Business Networking Forum”

logos 1
Co-organised by Penang Heritage Trust, Royal Thai Embassy, Kuala Lumpur,
Royal Thai Consulate-General, Penang and in collaboration with Think City Sdn Bhd
logos 2
DATE: SATURDAY, 11 & 12 MAY 2013

One hundred years after Phraya Ratsadanupradit Mahisorn Pakdi Khaw Sim Bee died in Penang (10 April 1913), this symposium will be held to commemorate the legacy of the Khaw and Na Ranong family in Penang and Southern Thailand. Phraya Ratsada was commissioner of Monthon Phuket or ‘greater Phuket circle’ which included seven provinces – Phuket, Thalang, Ranong, Phang-Nga, Takuapa, Krabi and Satun. Khaw Sim Bee is also remembered as the Father of the Rubber Industry in Thailand.
In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Khaw family established a business empire of tin-mining, rubber and shipping that straddled Penang and southern Siam. Trusted by King Rama V and Prince Damrong, the family helped to develop the economy and modernise the administration of southern Siam by introducing talent, technology and institutional innovations from Penang. The Khaw family left a legacy of beautiful mansions and landmarks in Penang, including the valuable Ranong Ground which was donated to the public. The Khaw clan was given the noble title ‘Na Ranong’ by the King of Siam in 1913.


  • Launching of the Thai Heritage Trail in Penang, Saturday, 11 May 2013, 8.30am at Ranong Ground, Esplanade & Thai Heritage Trail, 12 May, 9.00am-12.00noon  Penang Heritage Trust together with Royal Thai Consulate-General will establish a Thai Heritage Trail in Penang to highlight sites with significant Thai cultural, religious and historical links, with educational signboards and brochures.
  • 1st session:  PENANG STORY LECTURE:  Khaw Sim Bee & Na-Ranong Family, 9.30am-10.30am at E & O Hotel An illustrious member of the Na-Ranong clan will be invited to talk about the current significance of the clan and its historical legacy to both Malaysia and Thailand.
  • Penang Story Workshop on “Shared history of Malaysia and Thailand: with a focus on Khaw and Na-Ranong family” with speakers from Malaysia and Thailand, Saturday, 11 May 2013, 11.00am-12.45pm  The workshop is open to scholars and researchers, heritage conservation advocates and practitioners, cultural representatives and community champions who are working in this area, or are interested in the revitalization of Penang’s links with local and regional histories and communities.
  • Thailand-Malaysia Business Networking Forum, 2.00pm-5.30pm  The Deputy Prime Minister of Thailand and Minister of Finance, Mr. Kittiratt, will offer his remarks on Thailand’s current economic policy and direction at the Thailand-Malaysia Business Networking Forum that focuses on the co-operation between Thailand and Malaysia in the areas of logistics, tourism, electronics, trading services, halal/frozen foods, and rubber.  Several important agencies such as: Board of Investment of Thailand, National Economic and social, Development Board and Ministry of Commerce of Thailand, InvestPenang, Asian Strategy & Leadership Institute (ASLI) will be invited to participate in this forum.