Foreign Minister Saleumxay Kommasith paid a three day visit to Australia in response to the invitation of his Australian counterpart Julie Bishop to enhance the friendship and cooperation between Laos and Australia.
This year marks the 65th diplomatic anniversary between Laos and Australia.
At a bilateral meeting in Canberra, the capital of Australia, on Nov 27 Minister Saleumxay and his host counterpart Julie Bishop highly valued the friendship and cooperation which have been effectively enhanced under bilateral and multilateral frameworks since the two countries established their diplomatic ties in 1952.
Both sides noted that the official development assistance (ODA) from Australia to Laos has been increased constantly and today Australia is the third largest ODA provider for Laos especially in unexploded ordnance (UXO) clearance, rural development and basic infrastructure development.
The Laos side noted that the assistance from the Australian government has contributed significantly to the socio-economic development thus contributing to Laos’ efforts to graduate from the least developed country status by 2020.
Both sides appreciated their mutual assistance and support at regional and international arenas over the past years and hope that their mutual support will be continued to enhance their cooperation in the future.
Both sides agreed to continue to promote and increase visit exchanges at all levels and promote existing cooperation. Both sides also exchanged points of view on regional and international issues of common interest.
Minister Saleumxay expressed on behalf of the Lao government his gratitude to the government and people of Australia for their assistance and support to Laos in the past years and asked the Australian government to continue to provide assistance and support to Lao PDR especially on human resource development through the provision of scholarships and short- and long-term training courses.
The guest informed the host that Laos launched Visit Laos Year 2018 in late October 2017 and invited the Australian people to visit Laos.
In reply, the Australian minister assured the Lao minister that the Australian government is willing to continue to provide assistance and support to Laos and expressed gratitude to the Lao government for its assistance and support to Australia at regional and international arenas.
The visiting Minister also had bilateral meeting with Concetta Fierravanti-Wells, senator and Minister for International Development and the Pacific, met leading Australian business figures who are doing business in Laos, visited Monash University and delivered speech to Lao students studying at the university.
The minister also visited the venue of ASEAN-Australia Special Summit to be held in Sydney in March 2018.
Source: Lao News Agency