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Lao gov't takes step to develop seaport in Vietnam

The Lao government has instructed relevant sectors to study the establishment of a Lao joint state-private company to join its Vietnamese counterpart to develop a seaport in central Vietnam, a government spokesman said. The instruction was made at the two-day monthly cabinet meeting for May that closed on Tuesday at the Prime Minister's Office, local daily Vientiane Times on Thursday quoted government spokesman Chaleun Yiapaoher as saying at a press conference after the meeting.



In pics: China-Laos railway tunnel in northern Laos

Photo taken on May 21, 2017 shows a tunnel of China-Laos railway under construction in northern Laos' Luang Prabang Province. The China-Laos railway has a total length of 414.332 km with over 62.7 percent of bridges and tunnels, linking Mohan-Boten border gate in northern Laos and capital Vientiane.



Laos, WB launch 5-year partnership framework

The World Bank Office in Vientiane has presented the bank's Partnership Framework for Laos 2017-2021, local daily Vientiane Times reported on Thursday. The new partnership framework between Laos and the World Bank focuses on opportunities for all, sustained green growth, and improved access to human and infrastructure services, the report said.



Laos, Thailand agree on master plan

THAILAND AND Laos have agreed to draw up a a five-year master plan to double the value of bilateral trade and investment to US$10 billion by 2021. Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak announced the deal yesterday after an official meeting with Laotian Deputy PM and Finance Minister Somdee Duangdee in Vientiane.



ASEAN, dialogue partners discuss cooperation in clearing mines

Experts from member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and their dialogue partners on Tuesday were discussing plans on clearing mines in the region over the next three years. The experts met for the Expert Working Group on Humanitarian Mine Action under the fifth ASEAN Defense Ministers Meeting-Plus .



IMF sounds concerns despite strong Lao growth

EFFORTS by policymakers in Laos to maintain economic growth of around 7 per cent this year, a rate surpassing that of much of the region, has been praised by the International Monetary Fund. However, the IMF also expressed concerns about the nation's declining levels of foreign-currency reserves, a rising budget deficit and relatively high levels of public debt.



Pope Names Five New Cardinals, All From Outside Italy and the Vatican

Pope Francis is to elevate five Roman Catholic prelates from outside Italy and the Vatican to the rank of cardinal, the elite group of churchmen who are his closest advisers and can enter a conclave to choose his successor. The pope, making the surprise announcement during his weekly Sunday address, said the men came from Mali, Spain, Sweden, Laos, and El Salvador.



Laos has yet to fully benefit from trade privileges

ALTHOUGH Laos is enjoying Generalised System of Preferences exemption from over 50 nations around the world, the country is still unable to fully benefit from the special treatment. The Ministry of Industry and Commerce recently described a number of challenges Laos is facing in order to fully benefit from trade privileges.



Full Text: Netanyahu Tells Trump: I Hope One Day an Israeli PM Can Fly From Tel Aviv to Riyadh

Laos will organise the ASEAN Business Awards Laos 2017 with aims to select representatives of Laos to participate in the ABA 2017 awards ceremony, which is scheduled to be held in Okada Manila, the Philippines on September 6. The ABA Laos 2017 awarding ceremony will take place in Vientiane Capital on 27 October, Mr Thanongsinh Kanlagna, Vice President of Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry said at a press conference on May 22.



Surrogacy group caught

Thai officials at the Nong Khai checkpoint inspect items seized from a man and six women who returned to Thailand from Laos on Saturday evening, reportedly after plans to impregnate the women at a clinic in Vientiane via artificial insemination wer Thai officials at the Nong Khai checkpoint inspect items seized from a man and six women who returned to Thailand from Laos on Saturday evening, reportedly after plans to impregnate the women at a clinic in Vientiane via artificial insemination wer A CROSS-BORDER network that uses Thai women as illegal surrogate mothers-for-hire has been exposed after the arrest of seven suspects on the weekend in Nong Khai.



Pope names five new cardinals, all from outside Italy and the Vatican

Pope Francis is to elevate five Roman Catholic prelates from outside Italy and the Vatican to the rank of cardinal, the elite group of churchmen who are his closest advisers and can enter a conclave to choose his successor. FILE PHOTO: Cardinals attend the Palm Sunday Mass led by Pope Francis in Saint Peter's Square at the Vatican April 9, 2017.



Pope Names Cardinals for Laos, Mali, Sweden, Spain, Salvador

Francis, in his surprise announcement Sunday to faithful in St. Peter's Square, said his selection reflects the universal nature of the Catholic Church. In some of the countries, like Laos and Sweden, Catholics are a minority.



Pope names cardinals for Laos, Mali, Sweden, Spain, Salvador

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Arrest of seven at Laos border sheds light on surrogacy-for-hire conspirancy

The recent arrest in Nong Khai of a man from Bangkok and six Thai women carrying an empty nitrogen tank and lab equipment while returning from Laos on Saturday evening shed light on a criminal conspiracy employing Thai women as surrogate mothers, 1st Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge checkpoint chief Nimit Saeng-amphai said on Sunday. The arrest also prompted checkpoint personnel to increase searches of personal vehicles crossing the border, Nimit said, adding that he would tell border checkpoint staff at crossings into Laos and Cambodia to watch out for more suspects.



In pics: Construction site along China-Laos railway

Photo taken on May 20, 2017 shows China Railway No.5 Engineering Group's construction site along China-Laos railway in northern Laos' Oudomxay Province. The China-Laos railway has a total length of 414.332 km with over 62.7 percent of bridges and tunnels, linking Mohan-Boten border gate in northern Laos and capital Vientiane.



Environmentalists blast Mekong River destruction

The sighting of Chinese surveyor boats in the Mekong River off Chiang Rai last month set off alarm bells for environmentalists, activists and local villagers who fear the beginning of the end of the ecological richness which is threatened by reef blasting. China is known to have an ambitious plan to use the river to transport goods from its southern province of Yunnan to Luang Prabang in Laos covering a distance of 890km.



How to kowtow 101

China seems to be convincing the Thai government it would be a good idea to blow up islets and reefs interfering with its large Mekong River boats. The only thing that stands between China and its ambition to co-opt the Mekong as its own is opposition by Thai grassroots activists.