Xi returns with overseas successes
President says mutual trust will build up a win-win environment with Laos
President Xi Jinping said on Tuesday that his visit to Laos was a success and he is “fully confident” of the future of China-Laos ties.
Xi, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, made the remark when Laotian President Bounnhang Vorachith came to his hotel to bid farewell.
Xi said that during the visit he and Bounnhang, also general secretary of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party Central Committee, had agreed to jointly build a community of a shared future with strategic importance for the two countries and planned for cooperation to strengthen synergy of strategies and to achieve mutual benefit.
He said that the two countries should fully implement the outcomes achieved in the visit and promote better development of the bilateral comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
Bounnhang said Xi’s successful visit to Laos has lifted Laos-China ties to a new level and that the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party as well as Laos are “full of expectation” for the future development of the ties.
After the meeting, the two leaders witnessed the signing of a cooperation deal between the two foreign ministries.
Xi wrapped up his two-day visit to Laos and returned to Beijing on Tuesday night.
Earlier in the day, Xi also met with Laotian Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith. Xi said China and Laos should push forward the construction of the China-Laos economic corridor and ensure smooth progress in the construction of the China-Laos railway.
Cooperation between China and Laos is highly complementary, Xi said, adding that the two countries should expand and deepen cooperation in energy resources, electric power and finance and strengthen cooperation in areas concerning people’s livelihood, including education, healthcare and poverty alleviation.
The two countries are friendly neighbors and the two peoples cherish a traditional friendship that has a long history, Xi said, adding that China will continue sticking with friendly policies toward Laos.
He emphasized the two countries should continue maintaining high-level contacts, deepen exchanges of the experience of governing the parties and the countries, strengthen cooperation in defense, law enforcement and security, and enhance friendship between the two peoples.
Also, both sides should keep enriching and developing their comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership featuring a high level of mutual trust, mutual support and mutual benefit, Xi emphasized.
Thongloun said the Laotian people had long been looking forward to Xi’s visit and that he believed the visit will promote the two countries’ comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership.
In a meeting in Vientian on Tuesday with Pany Yathotu, president of the Laotian National Assembly, Xi said the exchanges and cooperation between the National People’s Congress of China and the National Assembly of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic is an important part of the China-Laos comprehensive strategic cooperation.
He encouraged the two countries’ legislatures to keep up the tradition of high-level exchanges.
Vientiane is the final leg of Xi’s first overseas trip after the 19th CPC National Congress.
The trip also took him to Da Nang, Vietnam, to attend the 25th Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Economic Leaders’ Meeting, and to Hanoi for a state visit.
President Xi Jinping, on a state visit to Laos, met on Tuesday with a Laotian family that he had come to know as a teenager when he went to school with some of them in Beijing.
Xi spoke with children and grandchildren of the late Quinim Pholsena, a revolutionary leader who was foreign minister of Laos from 1962 to 1963. Several of Pholsena’s children lived and studied at Bayi School in Beijing in the 1960s, when Xi also was a student there.
During their informal talk, Xi recalled that he had met his Laotian peers in sixth grade. He said he was impressed with how well they were dressed, with the boys in brown corduroy trousers and the girls often in elegant traditional dresses.
In a lighthearted moment, Xi said he remembered that Pholsena’s second son was nicknamed Chubby Boy.
Xi said that Pholsena had established revolutionary friendship with Chinese leaders of the time, including the late Chairman Mao Zedong, adding that China-Laos friendship has lasted for generations and become unbreakable.
China’s acceptance of the Laotian revolutionary family demonstrated that the older generation of leaders of both sides had the strategic and visionary idea of boosting bilateral friendship, Xi said.
In May 2014, China celebrated the 60th anniversary of its public diplomacy organization, the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries. To mark the event, Pholsena was chosen posthumously as one of the nine foreigners who represented friendly exchanges during the 60 years of the Chinese public diplomacy organization.
The president called on the people of both sides to stay true to their aspirations and make more contributions to building the community of a shared future of China and Laos.
Xi spoke of China’s ambitious plan to lift the country’s rural poor out of poverty by 2020, saying that it is critical for the Communist Party of China’s goal of building a moderately prosperous society in all respects.
Xi also recalled meeting with the family members in 2010, when he was on a visit to Laos as vice-president. He gave them a photo of his meeting with the Laotian family in 2010. Xi received, in turn, a collection of photos about Quinim Pholsena and his family members’ interaction with Chinese leaders.
Pholsena’s son Sommath Pholsena told Xi that his family felt deeply moved by Xi’s comments on the contributions of his father in promoting Laos-China relations.
Sommath Pholsena, who is Laos’ minister of natural resources and environment, became teary-eyed as he spoke to Xi. He said his family could feel Xi’s affection for them and they were moved that Xi mentioned them in a signed article published on Monday.
“The descendants of Quinim Pholsena studied for many years in China. They spent their youth in China, and became witnesses, supporters and new advocates of the China-Laos traditional friendship,” Xi said in the article published by Laotian media ahead of his state visit.
Sommath Pholsena told Xi that his family members will keep in mind Xi’s words of “staying true to our original aspiration and remember our mission” and make continuous efforts to boost Laos-China friendship.
The minister noted China’s remarkable achievements in the past five years and gave his congratulations on the success of the 19th National Congress of the CPC and Xi’s re-election as the general secretary of the CPC Central Committee.
President Xi Jinping and Laotian President Bounnhang Vorachith place flowers during a ceremony on Tuesday marking the start of work on a hospital expansion in Vientiane, Laos, involving money and medical equipment from China.
President Xi Jinping talks with the family of the late revolutionary leader Quinim Pholsena at Xi’s hotel in Vientiane, Laos, on Tuesday.