Laos was taken over by Pathet Lao in 1975. When he took over, the foreign relations were characterized by total hostility towards the west. The Lao Peoples Democratic Republic Government aligned and associated itself with the soviet bloc. The government maintained close ties with the Soviet Union. Most of its foreign assistance came from the soviets. Laos also established close ties with Vietnam. This led to the creation and formalization of a treaty in 1977 that led to tensions with China.
When the Soviet Union collapsed, and Vietnam was unable to provide sufficient foreign assistance, Laos decided to improve relations with its neighbors in the region. Therefore, it emerged from international isolation. This has been marked through establishment and expansion of ties with other countries such as France, Australia, Japan, India, and Sweden. Laos also normalized trade relations with the U.S in 2004. The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) admitted Laos in the year 1997. The country later applied to become a member of the World Tade Organization in the year 1998.
Up to now, the country has established bilateral ties with 134 countries. The importance of bilateral ties cannot be overemphasized. They are important in maintaining close ties for business and other opportunities.
After it occupied Vietnam, France incorporated Laos into the French Indochina, through a series of treaties with Siam between 1893 and 1904. Japanese occupied French Indochina during the Second World War. Japan later surrendered and Laos independence was declared by Laos nationalists.
However, in 1946, French troops repossessed the territory and only allowed limited self rule in Laos. When the first Indochina war happened, the Pathet Lao resistance organization was formed by the Indochinese communist party. This is movement that led to the independence of Lao. The French were later defeated by Vietnamese communists who gave Lao full independence.
Laos Embassy in France
Laos has an embassy in Paris in able to maintain those cordial ties. On the other hand, France has an embassy in Vientiane, which is the largest city in Laos and also serves as the capital city. The Laos embassy which is in Paris is the sole representation of Laos in France. The embassy in Paris is among 45 diplomatic and foreign missions of Laos abroad. The embassy in Paris can be contacted directly for those who have passport requirements and those seeking visa regulations.
The embassy is open during weekdays from 9 in the morning till noon. Afternoon sessions start from 2pm to 5pm. The physical address of the embassy is 74, avenue Raymond, Poincare. The telephone number is 75116. The embassy can also be reached through fax which is (33-1) 4553 0298 or through their website at AmbaLaos-France. The head of mission at the embassy is Ambassador Khouanta Phalivong.
For those seeking to travel to Lao, there are several ways through which they can reach the embassy. They can visit the Lao embassy in France within normal working hours and they will be served. They can also call the embassy using the number provided to confirm whether the services they are seeking are available at the moment. Alternatively they can also use fax to contact the embassy.