Mr. Dudley McKinley Thomas, the newly accredited Liberian Ambassador to the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), has presented his Letters of Credence to the President of that country, Mr. Bounnhang Vorachith.
According to a dispatch from the capital of the Lao PDR, Vientiane, Ambassador Thomas presented his Letters of Credence during an official ceremony at the presidential palace “Ho K Ham” recently.
Mr. Thomas, who’s also Liberia’s top diplomat near Beijing, People’s Republic of China, is the first Liberian Ambassador accredited to the Lao PDR since the two countries established diplomatic relations on August 12, 2016.
During his audience with Lao PDR President Vorachith, Ambassador Thomas conveyed the good wishes of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for the health and longevity of President Vorachith and for the prosperity and continued well-being of the Government and people of the Lao PDR.
The Liberian envoy expressed the desire of President Sirleaf, the Government and people of Liberia to establish, develop, promote and expand a relationship with the Lao PDR for the mutual benefit of the two countries and peoples which he foresees will grow from strength to strength.
He indicated that Liberia and Lao PDR, as developing countries, face similar challenges in providing for the health, education and the general well-being of their people and their future development.
“I believe, Your Excellency, that Liberia and Lao PDR can share experiences; we can learn from each other as both of our countries pursue the goal of sustainable development,” Ambassador Thomas stressed, noting that an important area is “food security”.
“We understand that Lao PDR is self-sufficient in the production of rice and is now exporting to China and other countries,” he said, adding, “Liberia’s staple diet is also rice, the Liberian Government would welcome the rapid acceleration of efforts, to establish a bilateral cooperation mechanism between the two countries, which would help Liberia move from being an importer to that of becoming self-sufficient and exporter of rice in the West Africa region, in partnership with Lao PDR,” Ambassador Thomas urged.
He noted that the development of Liberia’s agriculture sector is one of the primary goals of the Liberian Government under the leadership of President Sirleaf which she is keen to promote at every given opportunity.
Speaking earlier, President Vorachith assured Ambassador Thomas of the Lao PDR support to Liberia and indicated his government’s consideration of requests for assistance in the area of rice production and electricity.
President Vorachith used the occasion to extend an official invitation to President Sirleaf to visit Laos.
Present at the occasion were the Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mrs. Khamphao Ernthavanh; Director General of Asia Pacific and Africa, Mrs. Fongsamoud Anlgvanh; Director General of the Protocol Department, Mr. Seng Soukhathirong, among others.
Accompanying Ambassador Thomas to Vientiane, Lao PDR, was the Second Secretary and Vice Consul at the Liberian Embassy near Beijing, People’s Republic of China, Mr. Moses Barclay.
Laos, officially the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, commonly referred to its colloquial name of Muang Lao, is a landlocked country in the heart of the Indo-Chinese Peninsula of mainland South East Asia, bordered by Myanmar and China to the northwest, Vietnam to the east, and Cambodia to the southwest.