Vientiane, 16 June 2016 – Laos and China have reached an agreement on the interest rate for a $US480-million loan to construct the high-speed Lao-China railway; however, the figure has not yet been publicly disclosed.
Somsavat Lengsavad, Laotian deputy prime minister, said the Chinese government has earlier offered Laos a loan with a three-percent interest rate, adding that Laotian government also asked the Chinese government to reduce the rate. He did not mention what the agreed-upon interest rate was on the $US480-million loan from China, which Laos will back with five of its potash mines.
Somsavat said after calculation, Laos has determined that it will be able to pay it back to China within five years instead of 30 years as Laos has five mines. The railway forms part of a larger 3,000-kilometre regional rail link that will run from Kunming in southern China through Laos, Thailand and Malaysia to Singapore.