The first phase of the China-Laos expressway, from Laos capital Vientiane to the tourism city of Vangvieng, officially opened to traffic on Sunday, the first of its kind in the country.
The Vientiane-Vangvieng section is about 110 kilometers long, designed as a two-way four-lane expressway with a design speed of 80-100 kilometers per hour. The project broke ground on December 30, 2018, by China's Yunnan Construction and Investment Holding Group (YCIHG) in cooperation with the Lao government.
The China-Laos expressway starts in Vientiane and ends at the Laos-China border town of Boten, with an approximate length of 440 kilometers. The project adopts Chinese technical standards for construction and operation and was planned to be constructed in four phases.
The first phase of the construction linked Vientiane and Vangvieng, reducing travel time from 3.5 hours to one hour.
Officials said when the rest three phases are completed, the highway will boost the economic development of central and northern Laos, as well as cross-border business cooperation and cultural exchange between China and Laos.