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Thailand, Laos, Australia mark Friendship Bridge anniversary

Jun 06. 2018
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By The Nation

Australia’s ambassadors to Thailand and Laos joined Nong Khai Governor Ronachai Jitwiset on Wednesday in unveiling a sign commemorating the 24th anniversary of the First Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge.

Paul Robilliard, ambassador to Thailand, and Jean Bernard Carrasco, ambassador to Laos, presided at the 9am ceremony with Ronachai on the span linking Nong Khai to Laos.

The deputy chief of the Lao border checkpoint at the bridge also attended.

The ambassadors hailed the bridge as a symbol of the strong ties between the neighbouring nations.

His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, Laos’ then-president Nouhak Phoumsavanh and Australia’s then-prime minister Paul Keating opened the Friendship Bridge on April 8, 1994.

Nong Khai Customs said 1.336 million vehicles crossed the span last year, carrying goods into Laos worth Bt63.164 million.

The year the bridge opened, just 19,053 vehicles made the crossing.

Last year 3.7 million people used the border checkpoint.

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