Piyanart Srivalo The Nation May 15, 2013 1:00 am Thailand and Laos will soon forge closer cooperation in promoting trade by upgrading two border checkpoints, adopting the single-stop inspection system and implementing a single visa. The Foreign Ministry proposed to the Cabinet yesterday the draft agreement for the Second Joint Cabinet Retreat between Thailand and Laos on Sunday in Chiang Mai. The signing of the joint statement by the two foreign ministers will be witnessed by the prime minister. Under the agreement, two temporary border passes will be upgraded to permanent status. The Phu-doo checkpoint between Uttaradit in Thailand and Xaignabouli in Laos will be opened permanently next year, while the Baan Sob-Rouk checkpoint connecting Chiang Rai and Bo Kaew was already opened last July. To facilitate the movement of goods and people, Thailand will soon adopt the single-stop inspection system at the First Thai-Lao Friendship Bridge between Nong Khai and the Laotian side of the mekong near Vientiane. The system will reduce time for truck transportation. Thailand and Laos have also agreed to promote the utilisation of Routes 8 and 12. Thailand will encourage more companies to invest along those roads. The two nations have agreed to promote tourism in the region by adopting the Ayeyawady-Chao Phraya-Mekong Economic Cooperation Strategy's single visa in the near future. The two countries will tighten cooperation to survey and post boundary markers and ensure peace along the common frontier. They will also cooperate in preventing trafficking in women and children and protecting them from hazards. Thailand aims to solve the illegal migrant workers problem by agreeing to extend the opening of the One Stop Service Centre for Laotian workers to prove their nationality by 120 days. The two nations have agreed to work closer together on drug suppression and to exchange information to reduce crime and crack down on drugs.