（中外新闻社 中外新闻网记者 韦燕 吴荣林 刘暖尧）2023年10月18日下午，中外新闻社“一带一路”采访团队专访应邀来华出席第三届“一带一路”国际合作高峰论坛的老挝人民革命党中央书记处书记、万象市委书记、万象市人民议会主席阿努帕•杜纳隆。
On the afternoon of October 18, 2023, Home and Abroad News Press journalist team for the "Belt and Road Forum" interviewed with Mr. Anuphap Tunalom, Head of the Delegation of National Assembly, Secretary of the City Party Committee of Vientiane Capital and Chairman of the People's Council, who was invited to attend the Third Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation (BRFIC) in China.
Anuphap Tunalom expressed that the Lao party, government and people are pleased to see that the Chinese party, government and the brotherly people of China have made great achievements in development. China's influence continues to rise, has achieved sustainable growth, and has become a model for the world's economic and social development, providing important lessons for the Lao party and government in governing the country, and providing strong support for defending and building Laos. In the countries where the "Belt and Road" is being built, Laos has gained great benefits, and the Lao–China Railway has become an important corridor in Laos, as well as an important corridor connecting China and ASEAN countries.
This year marks the 62nd anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Laos and China. Over the past 62 years, the traditional friendship between the two countries has continued to develop and cooperation in various fields has deepened, bringing tangible benefits to the people of the two countries. The two countries and the two peoples built strong mutual trust with each other. As a country on the Mekong River alluvial plain, Laos is rich in land and water resources, and has sizable mahogany and copper deposits.
Anuphap Tunalom believed that Laos and China have strong complementarities. “Before with no railways, Laos' agricultural products could not be sold for large volumes even if someone purchased them. Once the Lao–China Railway is launched, we will provide seeds and money to Lao farmers to encourage them for higher production, and this work will turn into a large commodity trade in the future.”
In addition to the Lao–China Railway, the “Belt and Road” framework has also played a crucial role for Lao goods to enter the Chinese market. China has given Laos a stage to show itself; on the other hand, China has become the engine of the world economy, and the reason for seeking cooperation opportunities here is to get on the express train with China.
During the interview, Mr. Qin Guowen, Vice Governor of Hunan Province, had a friendly conversation with Anuphap Tunalom, where both sides discussed ways to promote trade cooperation between Laos and China's Hunan Province, with a focus on Laos' agricultural exports to China. China is Laos' second-largest trading partner, with bilateral trade between the two countries exceeding $15.9 billion USD from 2018 to 2022, with an average annual growth rate of 15.9%.
Products that Laos mainly imports from China include machinery, electrical appliances, equipment, automobile parts, steel, etc. Products exported by Laos to China are mixed gold, iron ore, timber, furniture products, paper products, fertilizers, latex, bananas and other fruits, etc.
During the interview, Anuphap Tunalom shared his experience of leading a delegation to attend the 3rd Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation, saying that in the past ten years, the construction of the BRI initiated by China has made great achievements and brought tremendous opportunities to countries, including Laos. Looking forward to the future, Laos is firmly optimistic about the development prospects of the Belt and Road, and will actively participate in the BRI to seek openness and cooperation and share the success of mutural development. It is hoped that around the implementation of the important consensus reached by the top leaders of the two countries, they will join hands to promote friendly exchanges between the two peoples, and take advantage of the completion and smooth operation of the Lao-China Railway to carry out closer and more pragmatic cooperation in the fields of infrastructure, economy and trade, culture and tourism, education, medical care and youth exchanges for making high-quality development of the BRI and further enhancing friendship and cooperation between Lao and Chinese parties and countries. The two parties will work together to consolidate the friendly and cooperative relationship between China and Laos.