The 40th meeting of the Vietnam-Laos Inter-Governmental Committee was held in Vientiane on Monday to deepen ties between the two neighbors, the Vietnam News Agency reported.
The event was co-chaired by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and his Laotian counterpart Thongloun Sisoulith, aimed at cementing the relationship between the two nations’ governments.
Speaking at the gathering, PM Phuc stressed that Vietnam always focuses on boosting its partnership with Laos, and will exert every effort to enhance the ties in all fields.
The two leaders expressed their satisfaction with the bilateral cooperation in 2017, stating that many agreements had been implemented efficiently.
Collaboration in politics, external relations, defense, security, economy, culture, society, and people-to-people exchange was also expanded, they highlighted, adding that Vietnam is hosting over 14,000 Laotian students.
Vietnamese enterprises have registered to invest in 411 projects worth about US$3.7 billion in Laos, 43 percent of which, equivalent to $1.6 billion, has been disbursed.
Bilateral trade turnover hit over $935 million last year, up by nearly13.6 percent compared to 2016, which exceeded the original target.
In 2018, both parties will focus on implementing the joint statement and agreements reached by senior leaders, as well as deals between ministries, sectors and localities, including those reached during this meeting.
The premiers also consented on the goal to raise two-way trade value by 10 percent this year, along with enhancing ties in human resources, traffic infrastructure, and sustainable use of water and natural resources.
They will also support and cooperate with each other at regional and international organizations and forums.
Following the meeting, the two heads of government witnessed the signing of 12 cooperation documents between Vietnamese and Lao ministries, departments, and localities in the fields of economics, trade, investment, education and training, and energy.