Thailand and Laos Set to Construct Sixth Bridge Over Mekong River

Thailand and Laos Set to Construct Sixth Bridge Over Mekong River

A sixth friendship bridge across the Mekong River is to be built between Laos and Thailand. The bridge will connect Ubon Ratchathani in Thailand with Saravan province in southern Laos. The new bridge is expected to reduce travel time from the La Lay international border gate in Vietnam to Thailand and vice versa.

The construction of this bridge was a key topic in recent talks between Thai Foreign Minister Maris Sangiampongsa and Lao Foreign Minister Saleumxay Kommasith during the Thai minister's visit to Laos on May 30. During the talks, both ministers agreed to uphold existing bilateral agreements between the two countries.

The plan for a bridge between Ubon Ratchathani and Saravan was first proposed during the Thai-Lao Joint Commission talks in November 2021. If realized, it will be the sixth bridge connecting the two countries, while the fifth bridge is nearing completion.

Laos and Thailand are currently completing the fifth Friendship Bridge across the Mekong River, connecting Bolikhamxay Province in Laos with Bueng Kan in Thailand. Construction of this bridge has reached 69 percent completion and is expected to be completed by November. 

This bridge is expected to reduce the travel distance from Thailand to the Cau Treo International Border Gate in Ha Tinh, Vietnam, to only 150 km, making it the shortest land route from Thailand to Vietnam.

Other Lao-Thai bridges include those between Vientiane and Nong Khai, Savannakhet and Mukdahan, Khammouane and Nakhon Phanom, and Bokeo and Chiang Rai.

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