On 15 October 2021, the ASEAN-China Centre (ACC) invited Mrs. Khamphao Ernthavanh, Ambassador of Lao PDR to China, to visit Hunan Province and successfully held the “Lecture Series on ASEAN-China Relations” activity at Hunan Normal University. Mr. Chen Dehai, Secretary-General of ACC, Mr. Boun Inthabandith, Consul General of Lao PDR to Changsha, and Ms. Guo Xiangli, Vice President of Hunan People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (HPAFFC), attended the lecture. Professor Tang Xianqing, Vice President of Hunan Normal University, chaired the activity. Over 200 students and faculty members of the university, including students from ASEAN Member States (AMS), attended the lecture in a warm and friendly atmosphere.
Professor Tang Xianqing extended sincere greetings and warm welcome to Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh. He said China and Lao PDR are linked by mountains and rivers, and China and ASEAN share close affinity and a longstanding friendship. In the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, Hunan and AMS sister cities, along with other related organisations, have been supporting each other through the challenging times and further consolidated the foundation of friendly exchanges. He noted that the university will uphold the motto of “being humane, caring, excellent and industrious” and the spirit of openness and tolerance, foster cooperation and exchanges with talents of different cultural backgrounds from all around the world and thus create an atmosphere where “a hundred flowers blossom and a hundred schools of thought contend”.
Secretary-General Chen Dehai pointed out in his remarks that this year marks the 30th anniversary of ASEAN-China dialogue relations and the 60th anniversary of Laos-China diplomatic ties. In recent years, ASEAN-China relationship has developed vigorously, boasting bright prospects for cooperation between the two sides. He highly praised Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh’s contribution to the development of ASEAN-China and Laos-China relations and expressed hope that students would further deepen their understanding of Laos-China and ASEAN-China friendly relations, strengthen mutual friendship and jointly promote the continuous development of Laos-China and ASEAN-China relations.
Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh delivered a speech on the topic of “30th Anniversary of ASEAN-China Dialogue Relations and 60th Anniversary of Laos-China Diplomatic Relations”. She elaborated on the development of ASEAN, ASEAN-China relations and Laos-China relations and introduced the exchanges and cooperation between ASEAN and China over the past 30 years in fields such as political security, economy and socio-culture. She stressed that ASEAN-China relations are of great significance to safeguarding the well-being of the people of both sides and promoting peace and prosperity in the region and the world. The two sides should continue to work together to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, promote economic recovery and advance ASEAN-China relations to a new level. She noted that the friendship between Lao PDR and China dates back to ancient times. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, China has provided strong support to Lao PDR. Leaders from the two governments are keeping interactions by video and telephone conference, and the two sides have kept a momentum of cooperation and continuously been enriching the comprehensive strategic partnership and the community with a shared future between Lao PDR and China.
Prior to the lecture, Mr. Liu Qijun, President of the Hunan Normal Unviersity, met with Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh and the delegation. He said Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh’s visit will help consolidate the traditional friendship between China and Lao PDR and promote cooperation between universities of the two countries. He expressed hope that the university could further expand academic and people-to-people exchanges with Lao universities and inject new impetus into the friendly exchanges between China and Lao PDR.
During the delegation’s stay in Hunan, Ambassador Khamphao Ernthavanh and Secretary-General Chen Dehai also attended the ASEAN-China Youth Forum & Closing Ceremony of the 8th ASEAN-China Young Leaders Exchange Festival and visited Zoomlion Environmental Industry Co., Ltd., Hunan Xuanye Ecological Agricultural Development Co., Ltd., and Changsha Commerce and Tourism College to explore opportunities to deepen Laos-China friendly cooperation.