Prime Minister talks with Lao counterpart

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Lao counterpart Thongsing Thammavong agreed on measures to boost wide-ranging cooperation between the two countries during their talks in Hanoi on July 17.

Accordingly, the two nations will continue cooperation to implement effectively agreements reached at the two Politburos’ annual meeting and the 37th inter-governmental committee on Vietnam-Lao cooperation. 

They concurred to increase high-level delegation exchanges, coordinate in organizing celebrations of major anniversaries, and share experience in organising the National Party Congress. 

In the economic-investment-trade front, both countries will intensify coordination to boost trade in the second half of this year and bring two-way trade to US$2 billion by the year’s end. 

Regarding security, national defence and border matters, Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung suggested the two sides closely work together to prevent terrorism and sabotage plots; encourage people to join management of shared border lines; improve the living standards of people in border provinces; and build a border line of peace, friendship, stability, cooperation and development. 

He called for bilateral efforts to prevent drug trafficking and accelerate the search for remains of Vietnamese voluntary soldiers and experts who died in Laos during wartime. 

The two Prime Ministers agreed to seek financial aid for the implementation of transport routes connecting the two countries and implement effectively the one-stop-check model at the Lao Bao- Densavan international border gates. 

Both countries promised to push ahead with cooperation on education, agriculture, rural development, sports, culture, information and communication, science-technology, and tourism. 

Discussing regional and international issues, the two PMs shared the view that the maintenance of peace, security, safety and freedom of navigation and aviation in the East Sea is the common interest and responsibility of all nations in the region and around the world. 

They agreed to strengthen solidarity and coordination at ASEAN, regional and international forums to push for the settlement of disputes in the East Sea via peaceful means and in line with international law and regional agreements.

Vietnam will spare no efforts to support Laos to successfully perform the role as Chair of the ASEAN in 2016, PM Nguyen Tan Dung said. 

He added Vietnam supports Laos in developing hydropower in the Mekong River for social-economic development. However, the Vietnamese Party, State and people hope that Laos will share the country’s concerns that over 20 million Vietnamese people in the Mekong Delta depends on the water resources from the river for their livelihoods, PM Nguyen Tan Dung said. 

Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong said the two sides needs to continue discussions about this issue and listen to the outcomes of the joint research on the impact on hydropower projects in the Mekong River, which will be unveiled in December 2015. 

If the construction of hydropower dams on the Mekong River’s main stream has great impacts on the environment and people’s life, then we should not do it, the Lao PM said.