The 39th meeting of the Vietnam-Laos Intergovernmental Committee aims to reaffirm the two countries’ priority of developing the Vietnam-Laos relationship of traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation. This is the first intergovernmental committee’s meeting co-chaired by the two countries’ PMs in order to continue the direction for the Vietnam-Laos bilateral cooperation committee, ministries, sectors and localities of the two countries to implement contents agreed at the meeting of the two Politburos on January 7, 2017 while agreeing on the cooperation plan for 2017.

Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc (R) and   Prime Minister (PM) of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic Thongloun Sisoulith. Photo: VNA
The people of Vietnam and Laos have long been fostering their traditional friendship and closely-knit solidarity as the two countries border each other. They have stood side by side during struggles for national independence and freedom. Under the leadership of the Indochinese Communist Party, and then the Communist Party of Vietnam and the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party, the Vietnamese and Lao peoples overcame hardships to reach the final victories in the struggle for national salvation. Promoting those achievements, the special solidarity of the two countries has been increasingly fostered, contributing significantly to the cause of national construction and defense of each country as well as peace, stability, and development in the region.

The 39th meeting of the Vietnam-Laos Intergovernmental Committee is held in the context that the Vietnam-Laos traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation have been strengthened and continued developing in all aspects. The two sides have regularly exchanged delegations and held meetings at all levels. In 2016, almost all top leaders of the two countries paid official visits to each other. Most recently, General Secretary of the Communist Party of Vietnam Nguyen Phu Trong visited Laos in November 2016.

Security-defense cooperation has been increasingly strengthened as the two sides have well implemented agreed security-defense contents. Vietnam and Laos successfully held a ceremony to review the increase and embellishment of border landmarks in Hanoi on March 16, 2016 in the presence of the two countries’ PMs; signed the Vietnam-Laos border and border landmark protocol and regulations on strengthening management over the Vietnam-Laos national border and border gates, contributing to laying the international legal foundation for cooperation and collaboration in the implementation of border and territory protection and management of the two sides.

In terms of economy and trade, so far the registered investment capital of Vietnamese businesses in Laos stands at USD 5.1 billion, ranked the third among countries with investment in Laos. A good number of investment projects have been effectively implemented, generating profits, contributing significantly to the development of the two countries, providing jobs and social welfares for Laos to eliminate hunger and reduce poverty, highly appreciated by the Lao side.

Ministries, sectors, organizations, and localities of the two countries have been playing increasingly important and efficient roles. Provinces and cities of Vietnam have been expanding their cooperation with Laos and Lao localities in building infrastructure, providing healthcare services, human resource development, and more.

Vietnam and Laos have also closely cooperated and supported each other at regional and global cooperation forums, enhanced cooperation with ASEAN countries in building the ASEAN Community and maintaining solidarity and consensus within ASEAN in dealing with important strategic issues of the region.

We strongly believe that the 39th meeting of the Vietnam-Laos Intergovernmental Committee will be a success so as to promote the comprehensive trust between Vietnam and Laos, forming a channel to oversee the implementation of high-level agreed contents and cooperation relations between the two countries in the coming time.

The People’s Army Newspaper

Translated by Huu Duong