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Li Keqiang Holds Talks with Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith of Laos, Stressing to Deepen Communication and Enhance Guidance to Push for New Development of China-Laos Comprehensive Strategic Partnership of Cooperation

On the evening of September 8, 2016, Premier Li Keqiang held talks at the Prime Minister's Office in Vientiane with Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith of Laos.

Li Keqiang congratulated Laos on the success of the series of Leaders' Meeting on East Asia Cooperation. Li Keqiang expressed that China and Laos enjoy a high degree of political mutual trust, comprehensive economic cooperation and extensive people-to-people and cultural exchanges, which not only earnestly benefits people from the two sides but helps maintain regional peace, stability and development. China is willing to work with Laos to, taking the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations as an opportunity, maintain close high-level exchanges, strengthen strategic communication and coordination, and substantially promote practical cooperation in various fields, so as to advance bilateral comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation to continuously move forward.

Li Keqiang pointed out that China is willing to, together with Laos, further integrate development strategies, collaboratively push forward its 13th Five-Year Plan and Laos' 8th Five-year National Socio-economic Development Plan, practically step up cooperation in production capacity and investment and ensure the comprehensive launch of the flagship project of China-Laos railway before the end of this year. The two countries should maintain the sound efforts in building the Mohan-Boten economic cooperation zone, the Saysettha Comprehensive Development Zone and other projects, and give play to the leading role of large projects in economic and trade cooperation and regional connectivity. China is willing to share experience with Laos in such fields as development planning, tourism development and agricultural disaster prevention, and strengthen customs and quality control works in order to increase the convenience level of port customs clearance. Both countries should improve people-to-people and cultural exchanges in culture, media, education and other areas, and boost cooperation in defense, law enforcement and security in order to maintain security and stability in the two countries and the region at large.

Li Keqiang stressed that China is willing to, together with Laos, continue to keep close coordination on international and regional issues, firmly support each other, and intensify collaboration under multilateral frameworks including the East Asia cooperation and the Lancang-Mekong River cooperation mechanism in a bid to bring better benefit to people of the two countries and the region.

Thongloun Sisoulith expressed that Premier Li Keqiang's visit this time is significant to the development of bilateral relations as it coincides with the 55th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries. The fact that Premier Li Keqiang led a delegation to attend the series of Leaders' Meetings on East Asia Cooperation embodies bilateral friendship and shows great encouragement and support to Laos as the ASEAN rotating presidency. Laos also congratulates China on the success of the G20 Hangzhou Summit. Laos-China political relations and cooperation in economy, trade and investment have realized synchronized development and achieved fruitful results. People-to-people and cultural exchanges enjoy sound situation. More than 1 million Chinese tourists have visited Laos. Bilateral cooperation in defense and law enforcement undergoes smooth progress. Under mutual support, bilateral regional cooperation has also achieved remarkable outcomes. By participating in Laos' infrastructure construction and helping with its personnel training, China has made positive contributions to Laos' economic and social development. Laos stands ready to strengthen bilateral coordination, accelerate railway cooperation and continue to create sound conditions for bilateral investment and cooperation. It is believed that with joint efforts, Laos-China comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation will certainly reach a new level.

After the talks, both leaders witnessed the signing of 20 cooperation documents in production capacity, economy, trade, investment, technology, education and other areas. The two countries also issued China-Laos Joint Communiqué.

Before the talks, Thongloun Sisoulith held a grand welcoming ceremony for Li Keqiang at the Prime Minister's Office. When Li Keqiang arrived, the military band played the ritual music while national flags of China and Laos fluttering in the wind. Li Keqiang and Thongloun Sisoulith stepped onto the reviewing stand, and the national anthems of the two countries were played. Accompanied by Thongloun Sisoulith, Li Keqiang reviewed the guard of honor of the three armed forces.

On that day, Li Keqiang laid a wreath at the unknown martyr's monument in Laos.

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