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Belarus's parliament ratifies agreements with Laos
Publication Date : 24-12-2013
The parliament of Belarus recently passed bills to ratify several agreements the European country has signed with Laos to boost investment and enhance bilateral relations between the two nations, according to a recent report.
One of the documents is the Belarusian-Lao intergovernmental investment promotion and protection agreement, the Belarusian Telegraph Agency reported on its website.
The first agreement provides that each party shall create favourable conditions for investors, while the parties shall also provide fair and equitable treatment for business operators from the respective countries.
The other document is the treaty on friendly relations and cooperation between Belarus and Laos. It provides that the parties shall develop their relationship as friendly countries, and shall be guided by the principles of mutual respect.
In addition, the members of parliament ratified the intergovernmental Belarusian-Lao agreement on visa free travel for holders of diplomatic and official passports, according to the agency.
The agreements were signed on July 1, 2013 during the state visit to Belarus by Lao President Choummaly Sayasone.
The Lao Ministry of Foreign Affairs said 10 agreements were signed during the president's visit, which was made in response to an invitation from his Belarusian counterpart Alexander Lukashenko.
They included agreements on friendly relations and cooperation that will provide the impetus for all-round mutual cooperation ranging from the humanitarian to the political.
There will be visa-free travel for diplomats and official passport holders, as well as agreements on promotion and mutual protection of investments, on the avoidance of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income and property.
Other agreements pertain to cooperation in research and development and education. Laos and Belarus are keen to deepen their ties and cooperation in the areas of trade and also technical cooperation.
According to the foreign ministry, during their July talks the two presidents reaffirmed their readiness to expand cooperation in economic and trade matters based on each other's potentials.
Belarus boasts highly developed manufacturing and agricultural industries, which are the sectors Laos is seeking to develop, while in turn, the Lao PDR is rich in mineral resources.
They agreed to work together in investment, the machinery industry, processing of agricultural products, chemistry, crude oil, pharmaceuticals and science and technology.
To bolster such cooperation, the nations aim to bring about conditions to facilitate meetings between businesspeople from both sides to explore joint-venture production operations, the foreign ministry said.
The leaders also agreed on the mutual participation of Belarusian and Lao enterprises in the state programmes of the two countries.
They pledged to make use of the newly-established Laos-Belarus Joint Cooperation Commission to boost bilateral relations.