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Lao PM voices support for China’s stance on South China Sea arbitration

Updated: Jul 15,2016 7:26 AM     Xinhua

Laotian Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith said in Ulaanbaatar on July 14 that Laos supports China’s stance on the South China Sea arbitration case unilaterally initiated by the former Philippine government.

Sisoulith made the remarks in a meeting with Premier Li Keqiang, who explained China’s principle and stance on the arbitration case.

The Laotian prime minister said his country stands ready to work with China to maintain peace and stability in the South China Sea region.

Premier Li appreciated the efforts made by Laos, which holds the rotating chairmanship of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) this year, in boosting the development of ASEAN, safeguarding regional peace, and promoting regional cooperation.

China is willing to work with Laos to jointly push forward pragmatic cooperation within such a framework as China-ASEAN dialogue relations, in order to make positive contributions to the welfare of people in both countries and in this region.

Sisoulith, for his part, said Laos is willing to join hands with all related parties to make the activities marking the 25th anniversary of ASEAN-China dialogue relationship a success, and promote the development of ASEAN-China relations.

On bilateral relations, Premier Li said China is ready to increase high-level exchanges with Laos, continue to firmly support each other, deepen pragmatic cooperation in various areas, and strengthen coordination and collaboration in international and regional affairs, to further enrich their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.

Premier Li said the two countries should propel the comprehensive construction of a bilateral railway project, strengthen cooperation in production capacity and investment, and build more demonstrative projects in such areas as infrastructure, electric power and energy.

Sisoulith spoke highly of the development of Laos-China relations and the communication and coordination of the two sides in international and regional affairs.

The Laos side stands ready to work with China to strengthen the alignment of their development strategies and strives for a comprehensive construction of the Laos-China railway project this year, he said.

The two prime ministers will join other Asian and European leaders on July 15 and 16 at the 11th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) summit in Ulaanbaatar.