Top legislator of Laos highly values theme of AIPA 41 hinh anh 1President of the Lao National Assembly Pany Yathotou attends the teleconferenced AIPA 41 on September 8 (Photo: VNA)

Vientiane (VNA) – President of the Lao National Assembly (NA) Pany Yathotou attended the virtual 41st General Assembly of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA 41), hosted by Vietnam, on September 8.

In her remarks at the first plenary session, she said the Lao NA highly values and supports the theme of AIPA 41, “Parliamentary Diplomacy for Cohesive and Responsive ASEAN Community”, which contributes further to implementing the commitment of the 36th ASEAN Summit and reaffirming the importance of close cooperation and partnership among ASEAN member states, and between ASEAN and its dialogue partners with a view to responding to the emerging challenges in the region.

In response to traditional and non-traditional challenges in the region and the world, AIPA, as the representative of the ASEAN people, has actively carried out its responsibility and played its role through parliamentary diplomacy in fostering close cooperation and partnership amongst fellow AIPA members, including through adopting numerous important resolutions of the AIPA General Assembly and contributing towards the realisation of a cohesive and responsive ASEAN Community, she noted. 

These undertakings are aimed at strengthening socio-economic and political-security cooperation at the regional level on the basis of consensus-building, promoting public participation as well as the whole-of-society participation in the ASEAN Community building process, encouraging the harmonised and responsive legislations, and exchanging the best practices and experiences in fulfilling the roles and responsibilities amongst fellow AIPA member parliaments, particularly their role in ratifying treaties under the ASEAN cooperation framework with a view to ensuring the effective implementation of the ASEAN Community Vision 2025 and the three ASEAN Community Blueprints 2025 towards concrete results, the top legislator of Laos added.

According to her, the ASEAN region is facing many challenges in 2020, especially the COVID-19 outbreak and natural disasters, which have imposed adverse impact to the socio-economic development, stability and security in the region and the world as a whole. 

Yathotou commended ASEAN for taking timely responsive measures and particularly Vietnam, as the Chair of ASEAN, for its successful convening of the 36th ASEAN Summit, the ASEAN Plus Three Summit on COVID-19 and the AIPA-ASEAN Leader’s Interface earlier this year, during which ASEAN and Plus Three leaders reaffirmed their commitment to strengthening cooperation in the fight against COVID-19. 

Laos has translated the commitment outlined in the Declaration of the Special ASEAN Summit on COVID-19 and focused on surveillance, control and responsive measures against the outbreak, she said, noting that as a result of the concerted efforts, her country have 22 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with 21 recoveries and no deaths. 

At the same time, the Lao Government has also focused its efforts on addressing the COVID-19 economic impact by adopting economic, fiscal and monetary policies and measures aimed at facilitating economic recovery.

Yathotou expressed her confidence that fellow AIPA members will continue to fulfill their role through parliamentary diplomacy with a view to encouraging the governments of ASEAN member states to implement measures and translate commitment of the ASEAN leaders as well as the heads of AIPA towards tangible results.

She also took this opportunity to express her appreciation to ASEAN member states, the bloc’s dialogue partners, friendly countries and international organisations for the technical and financial support and assistance, including through an exchange of information and provision of medical supplies as well as dispatch of medical experts to Laos in its efforts to combat COVID-19 and to recover its economy./.