The governments of Lao PDR and Japan signed an Air Service Agreement in Vientiane Capital on 16 January.
“This singing is a landmark for civil aviation cooperation between the Lao PDR and Japan,” said Director General of the Civil Aviation Department, Mr Yakua Lopangkao.
“It’s a fundamental event for civil aviation cooperation, particularly the opening of direct fights between the two countries in order to facilitate the development of air transportation of people and goods and to promote tourism, trade and investment for both countries,” said Mr Yakua.
Japan is the 27th country to have signed such an agreement with the Lao PDR.
Only around 4,000 tourists visit Japan annually from both Laos and Cambodia, but the numbers are increasing, according to Japan’s Kyodo News.
Japan began issuing multiple-entry visas good for a period of up to three years to citizens of Laos and Cambodia last November hoping to capitalize on the two nations’ growth potential which is seen as the highest among ASEAN members.
The agreement was signed by Minister of Public Works and Transport, Mr Bounchan Sinthavong and Ambassador of Japan to Laos, Mr Hiroyuki Kishino.
Deputy Minister of Public Works and Transport, Mrs Vilaykham Phosalath, and Parliamentary Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of Japan, Mr Kazuyuki Nakane witnessed the signing ceremony.