Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has chaired a meeting with the Việt Nam-Laos Co-operation Committee, relevant ministries and sectors to discuss the implementation of the co-operation agreement with Laos last year and plans for 2018.— VNA/VNS Photo Thống Nhất
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has chaired a meeting with the Việt Nam-Laos Co-operation Committee, relevant ministries and sectors to discuss the implementation of the co-operation agreement with Laos last year and plans for 2018.
The event was also attended by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Phạm Bình Minh.
According to a report by the Ministry of Planning and Investment, the two nations exchanged more than 300 visits at all levels and saw significant progress in economic co-operation in 2017. They have worked together to remove obstacles and step up trade and investment promotion activities.
Việt Nam now ranks third among countries and territories investing in Laos and has 276 projects worth about US$5 billion in total. Accumulative disbursement has been estimated at more than $1.6 billion so far, accounting for 32.5 per cent of total Vietnamese investment.
Việt Nam-Laos trade in the first 11 months of 2017 exceeded $808 million, up roughly 10 per cent from 2016.
Joint projects in transport infrastructure and connectivity have been developed between the two countries and within the region. The two sides are continuing to seek funding for key projects, such as the 725km Hà Nội-Vientianne Highway, and a railway connecting Vũng Áng, Tân Ấp, Mụ Giạ (Việt Nam) and Thakhec, Vientianne.
Last year, Việt Nam granted 1,246 scholarships to Lao students, 246 more than the number pledged.
PM Phúc said the two countries organised ceremonies to mark the 55th anniversary of diplomatic ties and 40 years since the signing of the Việt Nam-Laos Treaty on Amity and Co-operation.
The two nations should promote bilateral co-operation in various fields, he said, asking relevant sides to coordinate to carefully prepare for the 40th meeting of the Việt Nam-Laos Inter-governmental Committee for Bilateral Co-operation later this year.
Việt Nam will continue its support for Laos in socio-economic development, he said, adding that inspections must be carried out to accelerate the progress of some key co-operation projects. — VNS