On July 20, Canadian Ambassador to Laos Sarah Taylor concluded a successful visit to Vientiane, after more than two years’ absence due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The visit underscored Canada’s ongoing efforts to deepen the relationship between Laos and Canada.
The upcoming ASEAN and APEC ministerial meetings and summits, and how best Canada and the Lao PDR can work shoulder-to-shoulder on behalf of our people.
During her visit, Ambassador Taylor met with Minister of Industry and Commerce, Mr. Malaithong Kommasith, Minister of Health, Dr. Bounfeng Phoummalaysith, and Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Bounleua Phandanouvon, to deepen collaboration, partnership and dialogue between Canada and Laos, and reinforce Canada’s commitment to supporting the country’s post-pandemic recovery and efforts to respond to the economic crisis.
Supported by the Office of the Embassy of Canada to Laos, Ambassador Taylor also met various local non-profit and community organizations, UN agency and diplomatic representatives, and the Canadian community in Laos.
“As in partnership with Laos for the last 48 years, Canada continues to realize the benefits of our growing relationship. Canada remains keen to further strengthen bilateral and commercial ties, continue moving the dialogue forward on gender equality, inclusive governance, and human rights, elevate our relationship with ASEAN to Strategic Partner, and explore how best to work together to ensure our societies remain resilient in the face of the ongoing Covid-19 challenge and the mounting economic crisis buffeting us all,” stated Ambassador Taylor.
Since the outset of the Covid-19 pandemic, Canada has committed more than C$2.5 billion to support low- and middle-income countries’ Covid-19 response, including the Lao PDR. Earlier this year, Canada donated to the Lao Ministry of Health over 1 million masks valued at C$3.5M, and which followed a donation last August of more than half a million masks from PRIMED Medical Products, a Canadian company soon to be launching their manufacturing operations in Laos later this year. Support was also provided to the Lao Red Cross to assist their efforts with pandemic isolation centres. Canada also donated Personal Protective Equipment worth C$353,000 in late 2020, and C$150,000 to Institut Pasteur du Laos in early 2020 to purchase diagnostic equipment, personal protective equipment and testing supplies.
In 2021, bilateral trade between the two countries was valued at $42 million. Several Canadian firms are active in the Lao PDR, working in the communications, extractives, and manufacturing sectors.
Source: Lao News Agency