Vietnam-Laos relationship of vital importance: Vietnamese and Lao NA leaders

VOV.VN - Both Vietnam and Laos are fully aware of the value of maintaining and cultivating a "unique" close-knit and loyal neighbourliness for security and development, viewing it as a cause which is of vital importance.

Talks were held at noon on May 16 between President of the Laos National Assembly Saysomphone Phomvihane and his Vietnamese counterpart Vuong Dinh Hue following a welcome ceremony held for the top Vietnamese legislator in Vientiane.

The two sides took time to inform each other about their respective country’s situation, orientations, and measures aimed at continually promoting the great friendship, special solidarity, and comprehensive co-operation, as well as the traditional co-operation relationship. They also exchanged views on regional and international issues of shared concern, as well as co-operation between the two countries and the two legislative bodies at multilateral forums.

NA Chairman Hue hailed the great and comprehensive achievements that the Lao Party, State, and people have recorded over recent years, including the very important contribution made by the Lao NA.

He expressed his belief that under the clear-sighted leadership of the Laos People's Revolutionary Party (LPRP), as well as the effective supervision of the Laos NA, the neighbouring country will successfully carry out the Resolution adopted at the 11th Party Congress and the five-year socio-economic development plan for the 2021 to 2026 period.

The Vietnamese NA Chairman went on to affirm the country’s readiness to offer wholehearted support and help Laos to overcome all difficulties and challenges in order to process with sustainable development towards an increasingly important role and rising position in the international arena.

The two NA leaders emphasized that in the face of current complicated developments in the international and regional situation, both sides are fully aware of the value of maintaining and cultivating a "unique" close-knit and loyal bond for security and development. Indeed, both sides view this as the law of development which is of vital importance, whilst also being one of the decisive factors to the victory of the revolutionary cause of each nation.

The two NA Chairmen expressed their delight at the strong development of the co-operative relationship between the two countries and respective NA bodies.

In overcoming difficulties and obstacles caused by the COVID-19 epidemic over recent times, the two sides were forced to make joint efforts to maintain regular visits, hold high-level meetings, and bilateral co-operation mechanisms through all channels. This includes holding several exchanges and co-operation activities between both law-making bodies.

They noted with satisfaction the positive results of co-operation in the fields of defence, security, education, training, transportation, and co-operation between various localities.

Despite facing plenty of pandemic-induced difficulties, the two sides were able to maintain the momentum of trade and investment development, with two-way import-export turnover during the four months of the year reaching US$558.2 million, a rise of 20.2% over the same period in 2021. In line with this, Vietnam was able to retain its position as the third largest direct investment country in Laos, with 214 valid projects and a total registered capital of roughly US$5.33 billion.

The pair also agreed to work alongside each other to seriously and effectively implement agreements and results of recent high-level visits, including the Strategic Agreement on Vietnam-Laos Cooperation for the 2021 to 2030 period, as well as the Agreement on Vietnam-Laos Bilateral Cooperation for the 2021 to 2025 period.

This is in addition to maintaining regular high-level delegation exchanges, effectively promoting bilateral co-operation mechanisms, and boosting closer co-ordination in launching a range of practical activities within the framework of the "Year of Solidarity and Friendship" in celebration of major holidays between the two countries this year.

The leaders affirmed their absolute resolve to continue strengthening defence, security, and border co-operation to effectively deal with traditional and non-traditional security challenges, improve the overall efficiency of education and training co-operation, as well as develop high-quality human resources.

Moving forward, the two sides will continue to ramp up co-operation between localities, people-to-people exchanges, and trade and investment co-operation. This will be done whilst connecting the two economies and working together to find solutions to remove difficulties and obstacles for co-operation projects.

Regarding future co-operation orientations, they consented to enhance the exchange of delegations and meetings between NA leaders and other NA committees and organizations.

As a result, co-ordination efforts will be made in organising conferences and seminars as a means of sharing experience in activities run by the NAs, as well as in handling issues in order to ensure macroeconomic stability. This will be done along with boosting specialised legal frameworks aimed at supporting economic recovery and development.

They will co-ordinate efforts in supervising and accelerating the effective implementation of co-operation agreements and plans between the two governments.

The two parliamentary leaders affirmed their sustained efforts together with ASEAN member states to constantly reinforce solidarity, unity, and the central role of the bloc, while upholding common principles, values, and their stance on issues directly related to regional peace and security. The two sides concurred to make every effort to settle disputes in the region and the wider world, including the East Sea issue, through peaceful means and on the basis of international law.

Furthermore, both sides agreed to continue offering mutual support at international, regional, and Mekong sub-regional forums, including inter-parliamentary forums such as the Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU), the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA), and the Asia-Pacific Parliamentary Forum (APPF).

NA Chairman Hue affirmed that the Vietnamese NA will support and assist Laos in successfully taking on the role of President of the 45th AIPA General Assembly ahead in 2024.

Following the conclusion of the talks, NA Chairman Hue and his Lao counterpart Phomvihan signed a co-operation agreement between the two legislatures for the 2022 to 2026 period and witnessed the signing ceremony and exchange of a number of co-operation documents between agencies and organisations of the two countries.

The Vietnamese leader announced the awarding of computers, projectors, and cameras to the Laos National Assembly Secretariat, as well as computers, Vietnamese books, briefcases, and some education equipment to the Champasac Provincial Boarding School, the Friendship School, and the Vietnamese Association. These are to be delivered across four southern provinces of Laos with a total value of VND5 billion.

As part of the occasion, the two NA Chairmen planted a memorial tree in the premise of the Lao National Assembly House.

On the occasion, NA Chairman Hue and his high-ranking delegation laid a wreath at the Memorial of Unknown Martyrs in Vientiane.