When we think of APS shows we think of New York, New York or Columbus, Ohio, but not Bangkok, Thailand. Thoughts of Thailand probably include soft, sandy beaches and fresh, spicy seafood. But APS is here too, through its member organization the Society for Thai Philately.
Stamp collecting in Asia is flourishing. Stanley Gibbons of London estimates that two out of every three stamp collectors now reside in Asia. Mainland China is hot philatelic territory, but so are the countries scattered through Southeast Asia. Together with traditionally strong stamp collecting countries of Korea, Taiwan, and Japan, Asia is brimming with philatelic potential.
The latest event was the Thailand 2018 World Exhibition held in Bangkok, Thailand from November 28th to December 3rd, 2018. And quite an event it was.
Over 2,600 frames of exhibits with a worth of over 4000 million baht (113 million USD). Although most attendees were from Asia, exhibitors, postal services, and dealers represented over 70 countries. And to cap it off was an auction of Thai stamps that made collectors drool. Kelleher and Rogers of Danbury, Connecticut, have opened an office in Hong Kong and they call the it “The Sizzling Asian Market Place” for stamps.
I list a couple of auction items to give you a glimpse of what was up for bid.
First, an original master, hand crafted composite essay of H.M. King Rama VII was by the British Printing firm of Thomas De La Rue (left). It is dated 1927 and is almost identical to the final design approved for issue. Price Realized with buyer’s premium $21,460.
A rare and unique pair of a world-famous error caused by a double surcharge on a 1902 “Battambong” Provisional (right). In very fine condition, this horizontal pair was desired not only by collectors of rare Thai stamps, but also those who exhibit their stamps and who understand items such as this are exceptionally scarce. This particular pair hadn’t changed hands for 26 years. Price realized with buyer’s premium $1,007.
The Exhibition was topped off by a visit from H.R.H. Princess Sirindhorn, who is not only a stamp collector, but has been involved in designing stamps for the Thai Postal Service. The Exhibition was under the patronage of FIP and the auspices of FIAP. FIAP being the Federation of Inter-Asian Philately which was started in the early 70s when a group of enthusiastic philatelists from Asia had a common desire to form one big philatelic family.
Next event is in Wuhan, China in June 2019. How to get there? Go West until you are Far East. Maybe you better check with a travel agent.