Laos to benefit from reduced tariffs through RCEP

Anhui, China: Laos will benefit from a reduced tariff policy implemented by the Chinese government after the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) comes into full effect.
The governments of Laos and China are now negotiating the percentage by which tariffs will be reduced, Vice President of the Lao Front for National Development, Mr Chanthavong Seneamatmontry, who headed the Lao delegation attending the 2023 RCEP Local Governments and Friendship Cities Cooperation (Huangshan) Forum, told the Vientiane Times on Friday.      
The tariff reduction policy will help foster closer ties in trade and investment between Laos and China as well as bolster the economies of RCEP member countries, he said.
To maximise the benefits offered by integration and cooperation, it is essential that Lao business partnerships fully understand and negotiate the details of any agreements they enter into, Mr Chanthavong said.
It’s also important that businesses improve the quality of their products so they meet accepted market standards.
The RCEP agreement is now in effect for all its 15 members. China is the largest market and is enhancing its centrality in regional cooperation with a view to building a more closely integrated China-Asean community with a shared future, Mr Chanthavong said.
China attaches great importance to relations with Laos and is ready to work with Laos to move forward the two countries’ longstanding friendship and deepen mutual political trust.
Implementation of the action plan on the building of a community with a shared future for China and Laos will foster closer cooperation, leading to win-win results, he said.
The Chinese government has previously offered favourable policies regarding trade and tariff reductions on certain items and will now extend more benefits.
Mr Chanthavong said China is encouraging its companies to invest in Laos and supports Laos’ efforts to improve citizens’ quality of life.
China is willing to work with Asean countries including Laos to boost regional economic integration and the signing of agreements under the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership to jointly ensure regional peace, stability, development and prosperity.
Laos is ready to work closely with China for more mutually beneficial results, through closer cooperation in the field of governance and enhanced cooperation in trade, investment, tourism and agriculture, as well as in maximising the benefits of the Laos-China Railway.
Laos will continue to promote trade, improve its business environment, and encourage Chinese companies to invest in Laos and other countries in the region.