Vietnam, Laos vow to deepen comprehensive cooperation ties

VOV.VN - Vietnam and Laos always place great importance on and give the highest priority to consolidating and strengthening the close relationship, special solidarity, and comprehensive co-operation that exists between the two countries.

The agreement was reached during high-level talks held in Hanoi on January 8 between Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh and his Lao counterpart Phankham Viphavanh who is in Hanoi for an official visit to Vietnam.

They shared the view that, despite the impact of the COVID-19 epidemic, the joint co-operative relationship has been developing in an effective and substantial manner.

The two sides have maintained contact and delegation exchanges through all channels and regularly deployed bilateral co-operation mechanisms in various forms. Co-operation in defence, security, and diplomacy, as well as co-ordination at regional and international forums, has  been strengthened. Co-operation between various ministries, sectors, and localities has also been increasingly promoted.

It’s noteworthy that their two-way trade turnover reached US$1.3 billion in 2021, representing an annual rise of more than 30%. In addition, Vietnamese invested capital into Laos also rose by 27% from the previous year to US$112 million.

The two sides agreed to maintain reciprocal visits and contact in flexible and effective forms, realise the agreements of their top leaders and competently organise activities in 2022 to celebrate 60 years of diplomatic relations and 45 years of the Vietnam-Laos Treaty of Friendship and Cooperation.

They will co-ordinate effectively in implementing protocols and co-operation plans on security and defence, jointly combat transnational crimes, drug-related crimes, and illegal exploitation of natural resources, support each other in maintaining stability, security, and society, and make a greater effort to search, collect, and repatriate the remains of Vietnamese martyrs who died in Laos.

Chinh and Viphavanh agreed to step up the connectivity between the two economies, including hard and soft infrastructure for road, railway, aviation, and seaport projects. The Vietnamese side vowed to help landlocked Laos successfully fulfill its goal of becoming a logistics hub in the region to connect to the sea.

In terms of economic co-operation, the two leaders agreed to resolve difficulties and problems, propose new mechanisms and policies suitable to the nature of bilateral ties, create a stable and transparent legal framework, and constitute a favourable business environment in which to promote further trade and investment.

Both sides consented to increase bilateral co-operation in education-training, culture, sports, and tourism, as well as in the fields of clean agriculture, e-commerce, digital transformation, and innovation.

Exchanging views on regional and international issues of mutual concern, both PMs said the two countries will continue to closely co-ordinate and support each other at multilateral forums, especially ASEAN, the UN, and Greater Mekong Sub-regional cooperation mechanisms.

They voiced their strong support for Cambodia’s ASEAN Chairmanship role in 2022 and vowed to work alongside other regional countries to maintain solidarity, consensus, and the central role of the bloc to successfully build a united, strong, and resilient ASEAN community.

They agreed to support Cambodia in promoting the implementation of ASEAN’s five-point consensus, including ending violence, promoting a ceasefire, and offering humanitarian assistance to Myanmar.

The two sides also agreed to maintain the bloc’s common stance on strategic issues relating to regional peace and stability, including the East Sea issue.

During the talks, PM Viphavanh cordially invited PM Chinh to pay an official visit to Laos at an appropriate time. The invitation was then accepted with pleasure.

After the talks, the two PMs witnessed the signing and exchanging of eight co-operation documents in the fields of security, border, economy, banking, education, health care, and electricity generation.

Lao PM Phankham Viphavanh arrived in Hanoi on January 8, beginning a three-day official visit to Vietnam at the invitation of Vietnamese PM Pham Minh Chinh.

During his stay, the Lao PM will co-chair the 44th session of the Vietnam – Lao Intergovernmental Committee and launch the Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year.

This is Viphavanh’s first visit to Vietnam in his capacity as Prime Minister of Laos.

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