|Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc welcomes Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith (L) Photo:VGP
Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith and his high-level government delegation on July 5 embarked on a two-day visit to Vietnam at the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc.
The visit was made after both nations had initially successfully brought the COVID-19 epidemic under control, with Vietnam having been through nearly 3 months without recording any single fresh infection of local transmission and keeping the epidemic situation in check which has earned international plaudits.
The Lao government has officially declared the successful control of the epidemic in the first phase and the nation has seen no new positive COVID-19 cases in the community for more than three months.
This is the first visit of a foreign senior leader to Vietnam since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. This has indicated the special relationship between Vietnam and Laos as well as their sustained epidemic containment efforts in the spirit of closer cooperation to build ASEAN's overall recovery plan towards creating a driving force for the process of boosting socio-economic recovery and development post-COVID-19 between the two nations as well as within ASEAN.
Within the framework of the visit, the two PMs held talks during which, PM Phuc hailed the achievements recorded by the Lao party and people and expressed his confidence that the country will soon overcome the pandemic consequences.
The Lao government leader, in turn, showed his elation at his visit to Vietnam again immediately after the COVID-19 is put under good control, and glowingly spoke of Vietnam’s tremendous achievements in the process of national construction and development and international integration, especially the effective implementation of the dual task of combating the epidemic and boosting socio-economic development.
The Lao guest thanked Vietnam for offering medical equipment and dispatching experts to help Laos in the coronavirus fight. He conveyed regards from Lao Party General Secretary and State President Bounnhang Vorachit and National Assembly President Pany Yathotou to their Vietnamese counterparts Nguyen Phu Trong and Nguyen Thi Kim Ngan.
Host and guest stressed that greater efforts should be stepped up to promote the trade of goods and services as well as people-to-people exchanges, and suggested considering the reopening of air routes at an earliest possible time, resuming high-level visits and contacts, and strengthening the exchange of information and sharing of experience on socio-economic development of their respective nations.
They consented to speed up the effective implementation of the agreements signed and augment bilateral cooperation in defence, security, economy, trade, investment and finance.
The two PMs also compared notes on a number of international and regional issues of shared concern, and concurred to push forward closer coordination within the framework of various forums.
The Lao leader congratulated Vietnam on successfully hosting the 36th ASEAN Summit and upholding its role as the ASEAN Chair, and affirmed his nation’s willingness to provide continued support for Vietnam. Meanwhile, PM Phuc thanked Laos for its coordination- a factor that contributes to the combined efforts in building a powerful, cohesive and responsive ASEAN community.
Both leaders also laid stress on the importance of maintaining peace, stability and adherence to law, especially the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
On July 6 Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith is set to visit a number of production and service establishments as part of his trip.