Laos FM’s first-ever official visit opens new page in ties
Laos voiced a will to strengthen the relations and cooperation with Azerbaijan, as Foreign Minister of Laos Saleumxay Kommasith paid his country’s first-ever official visit to Azerbaijan this week.
Kommasith held a number of meetings with the officials of the country during his two-day stay in Baku, and inked a deal with his Azerbaijani counterpart.
President Ilham Aliyev received Kommasith on June 19, where they exchanged views on cooperation between Azerbaijan Laos in a number of fields, including education and tourism.
The head of state described Kommasith's visit to Azerbaijan as a good indicative of mutual interest in strengthening bilateral ties between the two countries.
Kommasith, in turn, hailed the long history of Azerbaijan-Laos relations, saying this relationship started at the time of the Soviet Union. He praised Azerbaijan's significant contributions to the socioeconomic development, as well as to staff training in Lao People's Democratic Republic.
The FM described Azerbaijan as the leading country in the region and praised its great strides. He emphasized the importance of reciprocal visits between the two countries.
Later, Kommasith met with Prime Minister Artur Rasizade and discussed prospects for cooperation.
Rasizade emphasized the necessity of building a legal framework for revitalizing cooperation. The PM hailed Laos` proposals on joint projects in a number of areas, including the non-oil sector, agriculture, transport, tourism and education.
In turn, Kommasith expressed his confidence that mutual visits and exchange of experience between the public and private sectors will contribute to the development of cooperation between the two countries.
In Baku, the Laos delegation was also received by Parliamentary Speaker Ogtay Asadov, who said the visit of the FM will positively influence development of relations between the two countries.
Asadov stressed the importance of signing the document between the two countries in terms of strengthening ties. “We are interested in developing the inter-parliamentary bonds,” he added.
The FM expressed hope that relations between the two countries in the political, economic, scientific, educational and cultural fields will further develop.
Later on the same day, Kommasith and Azerbaijan`s Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov signed an Agreement on Exemption from visa requirement for holders of diplomatic passports.
Prior to the signing ceremony, the foreign ministers had a tete-atete and extended meetings with the participation of delegations.
The ministers emphasized the importance of renewal and further development of cooperation in all spheres. In this context, they noted the significance of exchange of high level visits in order to promote bilateral relations and cooperation.
In this regard, Mammadyarov pointed out that the visit paid by Kommasith is the first ever official visit between Azerbaijan and Laos and expressed his confidence that the visit would contribute to the development of bilateral relations in all spheres.
They also noted the significant role of parliamentary diplomacy in advancing bilateral relations and talked about the establishment of Friendship Group in legislative bodies. Furthermore, both sides had a comprehensive discussion on perspective areas of bilateral relations and said that there are wide ranges of cooperation opportunities in the field of economy. They shared thoughts about the establishment of direct contacts between business communities and holding business Forums for defining those opportunities. The FMs also exchanged views on development of bilateral legal-treaty base.
They also stressed the importance of enhancing successful cooperation in human resource development, particularly in the field of education and continuation of exchange of students and researchers based on the traditions since the Soviet times.
The two ministers also exchanged views on regional and international issues, as well as touched upon the importance of cooperation between the two countries in framework of international institutions, including the UN and NAM.
Mammadyarov also informed his counterpart about the ArmeniaAzerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict and its consequences. The ministers voiced support to peaceful settlement of the conflict in accordance with the norms and principles of international law, and relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security Council, based on the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of recognized borders.