VIENTIANE, 24 Oct. (Xinhua) -- Laos is now fully prepared to host the upcoming Ninth Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM), to be held in the capital Vientiane Nov.5- 6, according to a senior Laos government official.
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Thongloun Sisoulith told local media on Wednesday that all construction and security preparations were completed. So far heads of state and government of at least 50 ASEM Members have confirmed their attendance at the meeting, the biggest international event ever hosted in Vientiane.
ASEM comprises of 51 members from Asia and Europe, and is designed as a forum to bring these two regions together to discuss issues of mutual interest, gain understanding, and boost trade and relations between Asia and Europe.
Construction completed for the event included a National Convention Center to host the meeting, villas for the visiting heads of state and government, and an extension of the Vientiane International Airport's runway to support the visiting delegation' s aircraft.
Sisoulith said security around the city had been tightened, with all services ready to offer effective security to the visiting leaders. Specially equipped motorcades have been prepared to escort leaders around the city during their stay.
Specially assigned healthcare officials and doctors have also been deployed at major hospitals, in case of emergency. Medical officials have also checked food and drink hygiene standards in hotels and restaurants around the city.
Press centers have been arranged to accommodate international and domestic media, with specialized Internet and satellite uplink systems for live broadcasting.