GOVERNMENT IN BRIEF 9/7
PM Dung hails Lao border progress
The Prime Ministers of Viet Nam and Laos have hailed the completion of upgrades to the network of border markers running along their shared border, saying that the work was a vivid symbol of the bilateral traditional friendship, special solidarity and comprehensive co-operation.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung (right) receives his Lao counterpart, Thongsing Thammavong, in the central province of Nghe An yesterday, July 8.
During their meeting yesterday, July 8, in Vinh City in the central province of Nghe An, Vietnamese PM Nguyen Tan Dung and his Lao counterpart Thongsin Thammavong also pledged to ensure that every aspect of the border co-operation mission is completed on schedule in 2014.
Dung congratulated the Lao Government and people on their stable political security, the country's fast developing economy – which boasts a growth rate of 8.2 per cent - and its broadened foreign relations and higher position in the international arena.
For his part, Thammavong thanked the Vietnamese Party, State, Government and people for their support and assistance for Laos.
The Lao Party, Government and people pledged to, together with Viet Nam, nurture the relationship between the two countries, he declared.
During their meeting, the two leaders also exchanged views on bilateral ties and international issues of common concern.
In his interview with the press the same day, Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh confirmed that after five years of implementation, Viet Nam and Laos now had 835 border markers in 793 locations and 20 benchmark pillars.
He noted that the modern and clear border marker system would create favourable conditions for border management and protection, trade and investment co-operation, people-to-people exchanges and cultural and tourism exchanges between border areas.
According to Minh, the completion of the work will go down in history as evidence of the mutual trust and understanding between the two Parties, States and peoples.
The same day, Pham Binh Minh and Thongloun Sisoulith, Lao Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister, also met in Vinh City.
They, on behalf of the two governments, signed an agreement on the response to unplanned migration and unregistered marriages over the borders of the two countries
The signing was witnessed by Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Lao counterpart Thongsing Thammavong, Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, representatives from the local authorities involved and 10 couples living along the border of the two countries.
The agreement is said to be of great importance as it creates a legal basis allowing the two countries co-operate in dealing with issues that have proved problematic over several decades.
It is expected to help stabilise the lives of people in the border areas, enhance their political and social security and promote co-operation and friendship.
Vietnam, Laos complete border demarcation
The last border marker on the Vietnam-Laos borderline will be inaugurated at a ceremony at the gate separating the Vietnamese town of Thanh Thuy in Nghe An province and the Lao town of Nam On in Bolykhamsay province on July 9.
Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and his Lao counterpart Thongsing Thammavong will attend the ceremony to celebrate the completion of building border markers along the two countries' shared border, which is seen as a key component of their cooperation for development.
Vietnam and Laos share a border line of 2,067 km which runs across 10 Vietnamese provinces: Dien Bien, Son La, Thanh Hoa, Nghe An, Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri, Thua Thien-Hue, Quang Nam and Kon Tum. The line also passes 10 Lao provinces: Phongsaly, Luang Prabang, Houaphan, Bolykhamsay, Khammoune, Savannakhet, Salavan, Xiengkhouang, Sepon and Attapeu.
The two countries first signed a 10-year agreement on border demarcation in July 1977. During the following period, the two sides planted 214 markers in 199 positions. The successful result was recognised in the protocol on border demarcation and border marker planting signed by the two neighbours in October 1987.
In 2003, the two sides completed a Vietnam-Laos border map at a scale of 1/50,000. However, at that time it became clear that the old marker system was no longer suitable to meet the requirements, when the density of markers was too low (214 markers in 199 positions along a 2,067 km long border). Furthermore, the markers had degraded significantly since their planting over 20 years before.
Leaders of the two countries agreed to implement a project to restore and add new border markers along their border between the 2008-2014 period. This has been widely seen as one of the most important cooperation activities between the two countries in their recent history.
The project aimed to add more markers in necessary positions to clearly identify the borderline on the field and to restore and build new markers, especially at border gates, to ensure a solid marker system.
The project started on September 5, 2008 with the building of marker 605 at the Lao Bao-Densavan border gate. Work was scheduled for completion in June 2013, by which point the total number of border markers between Vietnam and Laos would be 835 in 793 positions.
Despite some brief delays, the work is now nearing its end. The two sides will next adjust the border map and compile a new protocol on the borderline between the two countries. They will finish legal documents recognising the border marker planting achievements in 2014.
Leaders have declared that new markers will improve border management, consolidate the security and defence of both nations, facilitate socio-economic development in border areas and create an environment of peace, friendship and cooperation along the borderline between Vietnam and Laos.
VN lauds Kazakh wartime assistance
President Truong Tan Sang yesterday, July 8, expressed his gratitude to Kazakh war veteran Issa Bisanov for helping train Vietnamese air defence soldiers during the war.
At a reception held for Bisanov in Ha Noi, Sang said the support and assistance from him and other international friends played an important role in Viet Nam's struggle for independence.
The Vietnamese Party, Government and people always remembered the contributions made by Kazakhstan's veterans, the leader added.
For his part, the veteran expressed his delight at returning to Viet Nam after nearly 50 years.
Bisanov said he and his comrades-in-arms admired the strong spirit of the Vietnamese people and soldiers during the war against the US.
He also praised Viet Nam's positive developments in all areas, adding that he always kept in his mind the image of a Viet Nam undaunted during the war time, and dynamic and creative in its national development.