Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and children in Hà Nội welcome Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith. The two PMs held talks after the welcome ceremony. — VNA/VNS Photo: Thống Nhất
HÀ NỘI — Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and his visiting Lao counterpart Thongloun Sisoulith reaffirmed the importance of the great friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation between Việt Nam and Laos during talks in Hà Nội on Tuesday.
The talks took place following an official welcoming ceremony in the afternoon.
Both sides agreed to facilitate all-level visits via Party, State, Government and National Assembly channels, enhance the sharing of experience in socio-economic development, realise the outcomes of the 41st meeting of the Việt Nam - Laos Inter-Governmental Committee, and encourage the two countries’ ministries, agencies and localities to expand ties.
They vowed to continue implementing border treaties and agreements, promptly preventing border violations, fighting trans-border crimes and stepping up the signing of agreements on national defence and security.
A conference reviewing the effectiveness of the one-stop-shop model at Lao Bảo – Densavan international border gates, and a conference reviewing the implementation of the 2019 agreement on the settlement of irregular migration and undocumented marriages in border areas will also be held.
The two countries will continue working to raise two-way trade by 10–15 per cent annually, effectively implementing trade agreements, signing a memorandum of understanding on border trade infrastructure development and connectivity, and promoting tax and trade incentives.
The two leaders pledged to take effective measures to ensure the progress and quality of Vietnamese projects in Laos, and hold more exchanges between leaders of the Lao government and the Vietnamese business community working there.
The two PMs highlighted the importance of education–training co-operation and high-quality human resources development, highlighting the history of Việt Nam–Laos special ties in curricula, increasing cultural and people-to-people exchanges and implementing their labour co-operation agreement.
The Lao PM committed to simplifying procedures and reducing costs related to permits for Vietnamese workers.
The two leaders took the occasion to share various common assessments of regional and international situations, as well as the future co-ordination between the two countries, including Việt Nam’s roles as ASEAN Chair in 2020 and a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council for the 2020-21 term.
On regional and global issues of mutual concern, they shared the significance of maintaining peace, stability, law, maritime and aviation safety and freedom, and the settlement of disputes in the East Sea by peaceful means in line with international law, particularly the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS).
They reaffirmed ASEAN’s stance on the East Sea issue mentioned in the bloc’s recent declarations, especially the joint communiqué at the 52nd ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Bangkok in July. Under the communique, the parties consented to strengthen mutual trust, exercise self-restraint and avoid actions that could further complicate the situation, while refraining from the use of force or threat to use force, preventing militarisation, fully implementing the Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the East Sea (DOC), and reaching a practical and effective Code of Conduct in the East Sea (COC).
The two sides pledged to continue working with member states to increase prosperity, solidarity and self-resilience among the ASEAN Community, and uphold ASEAN’s central role in regional architecture towards a region of peace, stability, co-operation and prosperity.
Following the talks, the two PMs witnessed the signing of eight co-operation agreements in the fields of economics, investment, education, finance, banking, energy and aviation.
The two sides also issued a joint declaration on the strengthening of Việt Nam–Laos relations of great friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation.
Meeting with top leader
Party General Secretary, President Nguyễn Phú Trọng received Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith in Hà Nội on Tuesday.
PM Thongloun Sisoulith briefed his host on the recent situation in Laos and the outcome of his talks with Vietnamese counterpart Nguyễn Xuân Phúc earlier the same day.
He said the Lao Government would continue working closely with the Vietnamese Government to direct relevant ministries, sectors and localities to effectively carry out agreements signed between leaders of the two Parties and countries.
For his part, Trọng spoke highly of the governments’ co-operation and efforts by ministries, sectors and localities in realising those agreements.
He applauded the talks held between the Vietnamese and Lao PMs, asking them to direct those involved to implement the deals effectively.
The leader also urged further exchanges on Party and political system building, management of the economy and society, integration into the world, and the implementation of resolutions adopted by their national congresses.
The two sides should also seek solutions to existing difficulties to improve partnerships in economics, investment, trade, culture, education and training and science and technology.
He added that amidst complex and unpredictable developments in the region and the world, the two sides also needed to increase information sharing and co-ordinate closely.
Earlier on Tuesday, following their talks, PMs Nguyễn Xuân Phúc and Thongloun Sisoulith witnessed the signing of eight co-operation documents on economics, investment, education, finance, banking, energy and aviation. — VNS
The Lao leader will stay in Việt Nam until Thursday. — VNS