Vietnam and Laos have agreed to further consolidate and strengthen traditional friendship, solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between the two neighboring countries.

The confirmation was reached at the talks in Hanoi on July 17 between Vice State President Nguyen Thi Doan and her Lao counterpart Bounnhang Vorachith, who is on an official visit to Vietnam until July 20.

The two sides agreed to continue increasing high-ranking visits and exchanges, promoting cooperation at the State, local and business levels, raising public awareness of the history of special ties and the Vietnam – Laos alliance in the period from 1930 to 2007, as well as jointly holding activities to mark the Vietnam – Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year 2012.

They also highly valued close and effective cooperation between the two countries’ ministries, departments and localities. Regarding national defence and security along the common borders, both nations have actively worked together for mutual development, contributing to building border areas of peace, stability and development.

Bilateral economic ties have deepened with Vietnam becoming the second largest investor in Laos with a total capital of 3.57 billion USD.

The two leaders pledged to create favourable conditions to step up progress and quality of projects in trade, investment, transport, agriculture, hydropower and mining, towards bringing two-way trade to 2 billion USD by 2015. The two nations will also accelerate cooperation in education, healthcare, agriculture and rural development, infrastructure, tourism, culture, and posts and telecommunication.

At the talks, Doan proposed that the two sides promote cooperation in many fields, including scientific research and education to develop human resources for socio-economic development in each country.

While discussing regional and global issues of mutual concern in recent times, both Vietnamese and Laos leaders also noted with pleasure bilateral cooperation in external affairs, sharing information and consulting each side’s viewpoint at the United Nations forums, the ASEAN and ASEAN Inter Parliamentary Meeting, among others.

Vietnam will continue assisting Laos in holding major meetings this year like the seventh Asia-Europe Parliamentary Partnership (ASEP 7) Meeting and the ninth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM 9) Summit.-VNA