Bilateral agreement aims at simplifying and increasing border trade between the two countries.
Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc and Minister of Industry and Trade Vu Huy Hoang and their Lao counterparts Mr. Somsavat Langsavad and Mr. Khemmani Pholsena signing a bilateral trade agreement between the two countries on June 26 in north-central Nghe An province.
Deputy PM Phuc hailed the agreement as highly significant since it will create a legal basis for boosting bilateral trade in line with the two countries’ time-honored friendship and comprehensive cooperation.
More specifically, it is expected to help achieve the joint objective of increasing two-way trade to $2 billion in 2015.
According to Deputy PM Phuc, in recent years border trade between Vietnam and Laos has grown, with a larger number of businesses involved and import-export demand on the rise. Administrative procedures and policies have been improved, while the infrastructure along the border has been upgraded. Efforts to prevent smuggling and the trade in counterfeit goods have also produced positive results.
The new trade agreement comprises 23 articles, documenting that all border gates on land are open to trade.
The import tax on goods made in Vietnam and Laos, as well as various products made by Vietnamese investors in Laos, will be reduced to zero.
The agreement also regulates payments for trans-border trade, controls the transportation of cash via border gates, and manages entry-exit regulations for people and vehicles.
The two governments have agreed to set up a joint Steering Committee on Border Trade and organize a biennial cooperation conference on the development of border trade, and have encouraged the establishment of a border trade entrepreneurs’ association.