Singaporean Ambassador to Laos, Mr Dominic Goh hosted a reception party to mark the 53rdanniversary of the Singapore National Day (August 9) in Vientiane on Wednesday, Aug 8, 2018.
Minister of Industry and Commerce Khemmany Pholsena, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Khamphao Ernthavanh, Deputy Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism Savankhone Razmountry, foreign ambassadors and relevant officials attended the event.
Singapore celebrates its Independence Day on August 9. We are a young country, only 53 years old. But we have achieved much in this short space of time, said Singapore Ambassador Dominic Goh.
We owe much to Mr Lee Kuan Yew for our development. When we gained our independence, few thought that Singapore could survive. His vision, his dedication, his hard work and leadership allowed us to develop to where we are today, said Ambassador.
The lessons on how Mr Lee developed Singapore are contained in his book, From Third World To First which has been translated into the Lao language and given to all Lao Ministers. We hope that this will help Laos develop in the same way.
Through the Singapore Cooperation Programme, we have trained more than 13,000 Lao officials since 1993. We will continue our strong assistance to Laos.
Laos and Singapore have excellent relations. In May, President Bounnhang Vorachit made a State Visit to Singapore where we signed MOUs on education and environmental cooperation. A Lao-Singapore Business Forum was also organised. Singapore is the 11th largest investor in Laos, and there is growing interest among Singapore companies to explore business opportunities.
Today is also ASEAN Day. Laos and Singapore are also close partners in ASEAN. As Chair of ASEAN, Singapore hopes to strengthen ASEAN’s centrality, resilience and innovation. As a grouping of small countries, it is in ASEAN’s interests to work together and stand united in view of external challenges.
We also have strong people-to-people interactions. Many Lao students study in Singapore. There are student exchange programmes between our schools. Every year, around 700 Singapore students visit Laos for volunteer projects to help people in rural areas. All these interactions help to build friendships and close bonds between our two peoples.
Singapore and Laos are close friends and partners. We will continue to build on this strong foundation to further enhance the friendship between our two countries and our two peoples.
Source: Lao News Agency