The visit to Vietnam between February 28 and March 2 by Laotian Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong underlines Laos priority of boosting ties and solidarity with Vietnam.

The visit will be Thongsing Thammavong’s first official visit to a foreign country since his became Laos Prime Minister, showing the appreciation of the Laotian People’s Revolutionary Party, the Government and Thongsing Thammavong himself of their relationship with Vietnam.

Relations between the two Parties, States and peoples of Vietnam and Laos have been constantly strengthened in recent time. Cooperation between various ministries, sectors, localities and businesses from both countries have also expanded.

Cooperation in education and training has been a major factor in the special solidarity and comprehensive cooperation between Vietnam and Laos. Generations of Laotian students have studied in Vietnam and this has deepened bilateral relations.

Vietnam receives about 650 Laotian students annually. At present, nearly 5,000 Laotian students are studying in Vietnam. In addition, both countries are working together to complete a project to improve the quality and effectiveness of cooperation in education and human resources development during the 2011-2020 period.

Cooperation in transport, healthcare, culture, sports and tourism have also seen progress. Both countries also have great potential for cooperation in energy, mining, forestry, transport, postal services and telecoms, oil and gas exploration, aviation and tourism.
Vietnam is one of the largest foreign investors in Laos with 252 projects valued at nearly 2.8 billion USD.

Trade turnover between the two countries has also increased annually. In 2010, the value of imports and exports hit 490 million USD.

Beside bilateral cooperation, both countries have exchanged information and worked closely together in regional and international issues and at regional and international forums and organisations.

During this visit, which is made at the invitation of Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, both leaders will discuss socio-economic development in their respective countries and work out ways of boosting bilateral ties as well as exchanging views on regional and international issues of mutual concern./.