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PM Phankham receives visiting Australia’ Foreign Minister Marise Payne

Prime Minister Phankham Viphavanh received here in Vientiane on Feb 24 a courtesy call from visiting Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister for Women Marise Payne.

The Australian minister is on a two-day official visit to Laos in response to the invitation of her Lao counterpart Saleumxay Kommasith.

Extending a warm welcome to the Australian minister, Prime Minister Phankham highly valued the visit by Marise Payne as a significant contribution to strengthening Laos-Australia cooperation in all areas, especially in the field of foreign affairs, further promote mutual assistance and exchanges and strengthen the comprehensive cooperation between Laos and Australia.

PM Phankham also expressed gratitude to the government of Australia for providing assistance to Laos in all areas including education, health, agriculture, poverty reduction, human resource development over the past years.

In reply, the Australian Minister affirmed her commitment to strengthening the sound relations and cooperation between Laos and Australia in all areas, especially in foreign affairs.

Payne’s visit also aims to celebrate the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Laos and Australia – Laos’ longest unbroken diplomatic relationship with any country.

Minister Payne is also expected to meet Foreign Minister Saleumxay Kommasith, and Head of the Party Central Committee Commission for External Affairs Thongsavanh Phomvihane to discuss how to support resilient recovery from COVID-19 and close cooperation with Laos – Australia’s ASEAN Country Coordinator as the two countries implement the ASEAN-Australia Comprehensive Strategic Partnership.

In an address at the Lao Government’s Institute of Foreign Affairs, Minister Payne will highlight many achievements over 70 years of diplomatic relations and opportunities for Laos and Australia to deepen cooperation to foster a stable, prosperous and resilient Indo-Pacific region, according to the Embassy of Australia to the Lao PDR.

Minister Payne will also announce new investments to support human resource development, and economic and environmental resilience.

These investments will build on Australia’s strong support for Laos’ health and economic recovery from COVID-19 – including through the delivery of over one million vaccines to Laos and Australia’s broader support for vaccine delivery and training for Ministry of Health staff, valued at over US$20 million.

Source: Lao News Agency