23 May 2024

The Thai cabinet approved 1.8 billion baht in financial assistance to the Lao government today, for the maintenance and improvement of the R12 highway, which will shorten the journey time from Thailand’s Nakhon Phanom province, through Laos, to the Vietnamese border in Quang Binh province.

According to Deputy Government Spokesperson Kaenika Oonchit, the R12 highway starts in Thakhek, the capital of Khammouane province in Laos, at the junction with the R13 highway, which is about 17km from the border checkpoint in Thailand’s Nakhon Phanom. It runs through Laos and ends in the Vietnamese border town of Quang Binh, covering a total distance of 147km and forming an integral part of the Asian Highway.

Kaenika said that the money will also be used to upgrade cargo terminals, storage facilities, lighting at intersections, public utilities, the drainage systems in communities and the improvement of tourist attractions along the route.

The R12 highway will enhance road communication and logistics linking Thailand with Laos, Vietnam and China and shorten the transit time from ten to just four hours and reduce customs procedures from five to just two checkpoints.

The R12 is considered as the shortest route, compared to R8 or R9, along the East-West Economic Corridor.

Kaenika said that the amount of goods transported from Nakhon Phanom into Laos via R12, after the completion of maintenance works, is anticipated to increase by about 50%.