Increasingly deep and effective Vietnam-Laos relationship

The faithful relationship between Vietnam and Laos was formed by Presidents Ho Chi Minh, Kaysone Phomvihane and Souphanouvong, and has been nurtured by generations of leaders and people of the two countries. In the more than sixty years that have passed since its establishment, this special relationship grown in an increasingly deep and effective manner.
The signing of the Vietnam-Laos Trade Agreement. (Photo: VNA)
The signing of the Vietnam-Laos Trade Agreement. (Photo: VNA)

In recent years, the political and diplomatic relationship has continued to grow more intimate and more trusting. The two sides actively engaged in delegation exchanges and high-level meetings to help shape the overall bilateral relationship. Defence-security cooperation has continued to be strengthened in both quality and quantity. The two sides have actively implemented agreements and cooperation plans, coordinated closely in immigration control, and cracked down on transnational crimes.

Economic, trade and investment cooperation between the two countries continued to see positive changes. To facilitate both countries’ enterprises and people, the two sides have signed a memorandum of understanding on developing and connecting Vietnam-Laos border trade infrastructure and the Vietnam-Laos Trade Agreement; effectively implemented the Vietnam-Laos Border Trade Agreement.

Thanks to efforts from both sides, bilateral trade in the first five months of 2024 reached 779.6 million USD, up 11% from the same period last year. With regards to investment, Vietnam remains as the third largest foreign investor in Laos. Vietnam currently has 241 active projects in Laos, with total capital of 5.5 billion USD.

Education, training and culture are also areas of cooperation receiving attention from both sides. There are currently over 14,000 Lao students studying across 170 educational institutions in Vietnam. The two sides are actively implementing the Vietnam-Laos Educational Cooperation Plan for the 2021-2030 period and the Protocol on Vietnam-Laos Training Cooperation for the 2022-2027 period. Vietnam and Laos are also working hard to implement a plan of cooperation in culture, arts and tourism for the 2021-2025 period. Vietnam is supporting Laos in building a sports development strategy for the 2023-2030 period.

Cooperation between localities, especially those sharing the border, continues to be enhanced in a deeper and more comprehensive manner, helping to ensure security and order in both countries’ border regions. The fruits of the Vietnam-Laos Solidarity and Friendship Year 2022 and the wide range of friendship exchange activities in recent years have contributed to improving mutual understanding and raising solidarity between the people of the two countries.

In multilateral cooperation, the two sides coordinate closely and support each other at regional and international forums, especially within ASEAN, the United Nations and sub-regional mechanisms. Vietnam actively supports Laos in assuming important international roles this year, including the ASEAN Chairmanship and the Presidency of the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly.

Earlier this year, the two sides successfully held the 46th meeting of the Vietnam-Laos Intergovernmental Committee for Bilateral Cooperation and the high-level meeting between the Communist Party of Vietnam and the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party. Through these activities, the two sides informed each other of their respective situations, as well as the global and regional situations, and discussed issues of shared concern.

On the foundation of the achieved results, the two sides agreed on major orientations for cooperation in the time ahead. The two sides also agreed on the need to continue enhancing solidarity, deepening the political relationship, advancing defence-security cooperation, creating breakthroughs in economic cooperation, and promoting cooperation in education, culture, science and technology.

As affirmed by the two countries’ leaders at all levels, Vietnam and Laos will continue making efforts to enhance and further deepen the Vietnam-Laos friendly relationship, special solidarity, and comprehensive cooperation for the sake of the two countries’ people, as well as for peace, cooperation and development in the region and the world.