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Modern-day Laos has its roots in the ancient Lao kingdom of Lan Xang, established in the 14th Century under King FA NGUM. For 300 years Lan Xang had influence reaching into present-day Cambodia and Thailand, as well as over all of what is now Laos. After centuries of gradual decline, Laos came under the domination of Siam (Thailand) from the late 18th century until the late 19th century when it became part of French Indochina. The Franco-Siamese Treaty of 1907 defined the current Lao border with Thailand. In 1975, the Communist Pathet Lao took control of the government ending a six-century-old monarchy and instituting a strict socialist regime closely aligned to Vietnam. A gradual, limited return to private enterprise and the liberalization of foreign investment laws began in 1988. Laos became a member of ASEAN in 1997.


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Transportation

Airports World Ranking: 101
42 (2012)

Airports - with paved runways
Total 9
2,438 to 3,047 m 3
1,524 to 2,437 m 3
914 to 1,523 m 3 (2012)

Airports - with unpaved runways
Total 33
1,524 to 2,437 m 2
914 to 1,523 m 9
Under 914 m 22 (2012)

Pipelines
Refined products 540 km (2010)

Roadways World Ranking: 91
Total 39,568 km
Paved 530 km
Unpaved 39,038 km (2007)

Waterways World Ranking: 24
4,600 km (primarily on the Mekong River and its tributaries; 2,900 additional km are intermittently navigable by craft drawing less than 0.5 m) (2012)


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  Laos (Vientiane):


  GPS points from Laos (Vientiane)

Phou Houayyen Khoueng Houaphan

Ban Fen Khoueng Oudomxai

Ban Pakphe Khoueng Phongsali

Phou Chomsi Khoueng Xiangkhoang

Nam Sa Noy Laos (general)

Ban Vang Phine Khoueng Savannakhet

Na Koung Khoueng Oudomxai

Ban Vangkhong Khoueng Bolikhamxai




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