Phl, Laos sign 4 agreements
- Aurea Calica () - May 11, 2012 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - The Philippines and Laos signed four agreements to improve bilateral relations as Lao Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong arrived for a three-day state visit yesterday.

At present, there are no Philippine investments in Laos, in the same manner that there are no Lao investments in the Philippines.

But Manila wants Lao businessmen to invest in agriculture, textile, mining, energy and tourism.

President Aquino welcomed the Prime Minister at the Palace where they held bilateral talks and witnessed the signing of the agreements.

The Cooperation Agreement between the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry was aimed at promoting, strengthening and expanding trade, economic, scientific, technological cooperation and other business relations between concerned organizations and firms.

It also sought an exchange of information about commerce, industry and the economy in general.

The government-to-government agreements were the Memorandum of Understanding between the University of the Philippines-Los Baños, Laguna and the National University of Laos to develop academic and educational cooperation and promote mutual understanding between the two universities; MOU between the Foreign Service Institute of the Department of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic; and MOU between the Philippine Sports Commission and the Ministry of Education and Sports of the Lao People’s Democratic Sports Cooperation.

The Philippines exports various products to Laos and the balance of trade as of 2011 of $524,355 is in favor of Manila.

A Philippines-Lao PDR Business Council is hoped to be established under the agreement between the chambers of commerce of the two countries to spur economic growth on both sides.

As of December 2011, there are 556 Filipinos in Laos, mostly professionals.

This was Thongsing’s first visit to the Philippines as Lao PDR’s prime minister.

While in the Philippines, Thongsing will visit the International Rice Research Institute, the Asian Institute of Management and the Asian Development Bank.

The Prime Minister will also be the keynote speaker of a business forum being organized by the PCCI.

The Philippines and Laos have been enjoying 57 years of bilateral relations.   

A PHILIPPINES-LAO AS OF DECEMBER ASIAN INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT AND THE ASIAN DEVELOPMENT BANK BUSINESS COUNCIL BUT MANILA COOPERATION AGREEMENT DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC LAO PHILIPPINES PHILIPPINES AND LAOS PRIME MINISTER
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