Vietnamese, Lao border guards check border marker No. 605 (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vietnam has almost completed a project to increase and upgrade border markers along its boundary with Laos, Deputy Defence Minister Nguyen Chi Vinh said on December 7.

At a meeting in Hanoi, Vinh – who is also the head of the Defence Ministry’s steering board for the border demarcation and marker planting – said the ministry considers the increase of and upgrade to border markers critical to the countries’ defence, security, dialogue, politics, economy and society.

Vietnamese and Lao agencies have coordinated closely over the last eight years to remove obstacles to the project.

As a result, they have created a modern border marker system that satisfies legal, technical and aesthetic requirements. The system is comparable to that of other nations in the region and favourable for the countries’ border management and protection, he noted.

At the function, members of the steering board hailed the project’s completion as an achievement shared by the two countries. It demonstrates their efforts to settle border and territorial issues on the basis of equality; respect for each other’s independence, sovereignty and legitimate interests; and cooperation for common development.

Since the project began, bordering Vietnamese and Lao provinces have completed the field planting of border markers with 834 markers at 792 positions and 168 stakes at 113 positions.

The two sides have also finalised a draft protocol on their borderline and border markers, along with attached documents. The protocol is to recognise the attainment of border demarcation.

Vietnam and Laos share a border of about 2,340 km that runs across 10 Vietnamese provinces: Dien Bien, Son La, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Nam and Kon Tum. The line also passes by 10 Lao provinces: Phongsaly, Luang Prabang, Houaphan, Bolykhamsay, Khammoune, Savannakhet, Salavan, Xiengkhouang, Sepon and Attapeu.-VNA