Chairwoman of the Lao National Assembly Pany Yathotu (Middle, front row) in Son La (Source: VNA)
 
Son La (VNA) – Chairwoman of the Lao National Assembly Pany Yathotu was warmly welcomed on July 4 in the northern mountainous province of Son La, a selected venue for a range of major events marking the 2017 Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year.

Following the welcome ceremony, Yathotu had a working session with provincial leaders, where she heard Son La’s socio-economic development in 2016 and the first six months of this year reported by Secretary of the provincial Party Committee Hoang Van Chat. 

In 2016, the locality’s economy grew at 9.2 percent, contributing more than 4 trillion VND (176 million USD) to the State budget, Chat said, adding that the local economic growth rate reached 5.15 percent during the first half of this year.   

Sharing a 250km border line with Laos, Son La inked documents on comprehensive cooperation with eight northern Lao provinces of Houaphan, Luang Prabang, Bo Keo, Udomsay, Luang Namtha, Phongsaly, Saynhabuly and Xieng Khouang, he said. 

Chat noted that Son La and the Lao localities have maintained the exchange of delegations, information and experience, contributing to enhancing cooperation and friendship between the two countries. 

At the same time, the two sides encouraged people residing near the common border to follow the Vietnam-Laos Agreement on National Border Regulations, he said. 

According to the provincial leader, in 2016, Son La provided the Lao provinces with 26.1 billion VND (1.14 million USD) to help them construct a number of essential facilities. 

Son La now accommodates 1,100 Lao students and has helped train 40 Lao officials, he said. 

Yathotou spoke highly of Son La’s socio-economic achievements, saying activities marking the 2017 Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year in the locality are significant, demonstrating the traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between the two countries and between Son La and the Lao northern provinces in particular. 

The Lao chief legislator noted her wish that Son La and the Lao localities will continue their mutual support across fields. 

Later on the day, the provincial Party Committee hosted a banquet for the Lao Na Chairwoman and her entourage. 

Earlier, the Lao delegation paid floral tribute to President Ho Chi Minh at his mausoleum in Hanoi. -VNA