Phnom Penh (FN), Apr. 23 – Laotian President Thongloun Sisoulith expressed hope for improved relations between the legislatures of Laos and Cambodia under the leadership of Cambodian President of the Senate, Samdech Techo Hun Sen.

President of the Senate, Samdech Techo Hun Sen met Laotian President Thongloun Sisoulith on Tuesday (Apr. 23) at the Senate.

Samdech Techo Hun Sen warmly welcomed the visit of Laotian President Thongloun Sisoulith. He expressed his belief that Thongloun Sisoulith's current visit to Cambodia would further strengthen the neighbourliness between the two countries and peoples. Additionally, he noted that tomorrow, the two parties, the Cambodian People's Party (CPP) and the Lao People's Revolutionary Party (LPRP), will also meet.

Samdech Techo conveyed his satisfaction with the recent flurry of diplomatic visits, noting his own trip to Laos, followed by visits from the President of the National Assembly and Prime Minister Hun Manet to Laos, and the ongoing state visit by the Laotian president to Cambodia. Furthermore, Samdech Techo expressed gratitude to the leadership of Laos for their congratulatory letter on the CPP's success and on him being elected as the president of the Senate.

Samdech Techo underscored the enduring relationship between the CPP and the LPRP spanning over 40 years since the initial contact between both countries, during which the CPP controlled two-thirds of the seats. The Laotian president recalled his first meeting with Samdech Techo in Moscow when the latter was a Cambodian foreign minister.

Samdech Techo Hun Sen also noted that the decision to transition power from the old generation leadership to the new generation in the past eight months has proven to be the correct approach. He underlined Cambodia's ongoing political stability, robust economic growth, and increasing national budget revenue, noting the absence of crises. Despite the prime minister's steadily increasing leadership ratings according to opinion polls, the CPP remains committed to preparing for success in the upcoming 2027-2028 elections.

Regarding the economy and tourism sector, Samdech Techo expressed satisfaction with the current level of cooperation. He noted the increase in trade volume, highlighting Cambodia's significant purchase of electricity from Laos, while also acknowledging Laos' commitment to supplying electricity to Cambodia. Samdech Techo also underscored the need to further strengthen cooperation in the energy sector. Additionally, he mentioned positive developments in the tourism sector, including the resuming of direct flights, leading to a steady increase in the number of foreign tourists traveling to Cambodia and from Cambodia to Laos.

Finally, Samdech Techo asked the president's support for Cambodia's Funan Canal project. He underscored that the canal would not harm the environment or disrupt water flow, but rather serve as a vital connection between Tonle Bassac and the Cambodian Sea.

In response, the President of Laos expressed his delight in visiting Cambodia and meeting with Samdech Techo, whom he described as an old friend and mentor with extensive experience in driving Cambodia's development. He underlined Samdech Techo's ability to wisely guide Cambodia's progress, both as president of the ruling party and as president of the Senate, indicating his continued influence across various institutions.

Once again, Laotian President Thongloun Sisoulith, on behalf of the National Assembly and the people of Laos, congratulated the CPP and warmly extended his congratulations to Samdech Techo on his election as President of the Senate. He fondly recalled his previous meeting with Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni in a warm and pleasant atmosphere.

The President of Laos also expressed gratitude towards Samdech Techo for his unwavering support of Laos. He acknowledged Cambodia's progress and expressed his pleasure in continuing to visit Cambodia, citing his participation in the successful SEA Games hosted by Cambodia.

Furthermore, Thongloun Sisoulith expressed hope for stronger legislative relations between the two countries under Samdech Techo's leadership as President of the Senate. He underscored the importance of capacity building and praised the efforts of both leaders in paving the way for the younger generation, particularly in addressing border issues to prevent future conflicts.

Reflecting on discussions with Samdech Techo, the President of Laos commended Cambodia's political stability and praised the smooth transition of power from the old to the new generation. He affirmed his satisfaction with the visit, acknowledging Cambodia's positive direction.

The President of Laos clarified that his current visit aimed to conduct a state visit to Cambodia and attend a meeting between the two parties. He extended an invitation to Samdech Techo to pay an official visit to Laos and attend a similar meeting next year.