The key important points to note from the Amended Law on VAT are summarized in this alert.Read more
Employers in Laos will be subject to legal action if authorities discover they are failing to pay their workers the minimum wage.Read more
Shortage of skilled labour is chronic, resulting in the reduction of garment exportsRead more
Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith has approved a list of businesses that are subject to government control, while also stating that types of business not on the list would find it easier to operate.Read more
The Central Committee of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party recently adopted core and urgent measures to drive the macro economy which is currently encountering some difficulties.Read more
Garment factories in Laos are experiencing labor shortages as workers are looking to Thailand for greener pastures, sources say.Read more
The Lao government expects domestic and foreign private investment to climb to 23,086 billion kip (over 2.72 million U.S. dollars) in 2019Read more
Improving the investment climate, and building a state governed by the rule of law will be the main focus of government activities in the first month of 2019.Read more
The government of Laos says it has been ramping up its efforts to battle corruption over the past two years, but NGOs say that the situation in Laos is getting worse.Read more
Laos has not fully benefited from the recent regional economic integration as its share of trade with ASEAN nations has declined, according to the National Institute for Economic Research (NIER), a Lao think tank.Read more
The government has told the National Assembly (NA) that Laos needs to have an electronic signature law in place to boost E-commerce and facilitate E-governance.Read more
Private investment prospects in Laos remain robust despite the nation’s drop in ranking on the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index, according to a government report.Read more
Chemicals released into a river by a Chinese-owned banana farm near the Lao capital Vientiane killed over 300 kg of fish in November, prompting warnings by authorities to local villagers not to bathe or fish in the polluted stream, sources in the country say.Read more
Two Chinese-owned cement factories in the Vang Vieng district of Laos’ Vientiane Province are covering approximately 900 local families in at least four villages with dust and smog, threatening their health, local sources say.Read more
A court in the Lao capital Vientiane today handed 15-year prison terms to the owners of a company accused last year of defrauding investors of thousands of U.S. dollars in personal savings, a Lao source says.Read more
Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs) in Laos must prepare for a new challenge when the government enforces the Law on Value Added Tax (VAT) next year.Read more
The free trade zone will also be a way for Thailand and the Mekong countries to profit from China’s flagship Belt and Road initiative.Read more
That is the claim of a Stanford University engineering expert who has scientifically analyzed the site of the disaster that likely killed hundreds of Lao villagersRead more
Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith has urged the Bank of the Lao PDR (BOL), the nation’s central bank, to pay serious attention to implementing Order No. 02/PM on improving the climate for doing business.Read more
Asia and Europe should strengthen cooperation to narrow the development gap that remains wide, Laos has told the 12th Asia-Europe Meeting (Asem12) in Brussels, Belgium.Read more
South Korean lawmaker and liberal newspaper allege that SK E&C altered original plans to maximize profitsRead more
The Lao inflation rate continued to increase above 3 percent in September despite the government introducing a number of measures to control the price of goods in local markets.Read more
Chinese economic development strategies need fine-tuningRead more
Lao Airlines has shifted its primary focus from searching for a business partner to improving service in a bid to make the national flag carrier more competitiveRead more
Authorities need to reduce the regulatory burden or “red tape” that businesses face in conducting their activities due to rules and regulations so that their compliance costs can be cut to increase their efficiency.Read more
Lao firms and households are expected to benefit from a new US$13-million project, which will promote reforms to the business environment, for instance reducing the number of days needed to start a business.Read more
Authorities have directed all media outlets to stop carrying advertisements for KIWI Co Ltd’s QR Code payments and services via the Alipay system in Laos as they do not have the required permission from the Bank of the Lao PDR (BOL).Read more
Vientiane Airport has doubled the size of its international terminal, supporting a Laotian initiative to boost tourism. Laos expects Vientiane’s international passenger traffic to double over the next five years, driven by a rapid increase in visitor numbers.Read more
Panyathip International School has partnered with the Wimbledon School of English, a British English language school, to officially open the Panyathip Education Centre in Vientiane.Read more
Internet users will have a wider choice of service options when the Lao Asia Pacific Satellite Co., Ltd. rolls out 4G wireless throughout the country early next year.Read more
Laos continues to face a high risk of money laundering despite the country graduating from the “grey list” of the Financial Action Task Force last year, according to the National Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Risk Assessment (NRA).Read more
Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith has ordered ministers, the Vientiane mayor and provincial governors to implement eight measures to stimulate economic growth.Read more
The Ministry of Finance in Laos has announced it has adopted a new Asean tariff code, giving a signal that Laos is ready to become part of the single regional market of 600 million consumers.Read more
Shaken by a deadly dam collapse, Laos needs to reconsider its long-term strategyRead more
The international terminal of the airport serving the Laotian capital of Vientiane, Wattay International Airport, can now accommodate as many as 2.3 million foreign travelers a year, roughly nine times the original terminal’s capacity.Read more
Members of the Lao business sector have recently called for the government to abolish a 10 percent excise tax on internet usage, claiming that Laos remains the only country in Asean to impose the charge.Read more
The Bank of the Lao PDR looks set to face a big challenge in keeping the value of the kip against the US dollar stable, as the local market is ignoring the official reference currency exchange rate.Read more
The number of newly registered and expanded businesses in the capital increased almost threefold during the first six months of the year.Read more
Laos having regrets as China’s grand Pan-Asia railway dream soursRead more
Vicha Poolvaraluck, chief executive of Major Cineplex, said he signed the deal with Thatnakhone Thammavong, president of TK Group and Lao World Plc, an owner of ITECC Mall, to open the new state-of-the-art cinema.Read more
The 16-hectare resort overlooks a lush greenery with a backdrop of beautiful mountain views and paddy fields along meandering streams and ponds in the rustic countryside.Read more
Public debt is estimated at around 68 percent of GDP and almost half of the money is being borrowed from one source – China.Read more
Despite development boom, exchange has listed only 7 companies since 2011 launch.
The Lao Securities Exchange wants to increase the number of listed companies from the current seven to 25 or 35 by 2020, but experts are skeptical.
Domestic and foreign investors will be granted a number of tax breaks under a new amended decree related to specific and special economic zones (SEZs) issued recently by the government.Read more
The concrete casting for the last pier understructure of LuangPrabangrailway bridge has been successfully completed, laying down all the foundation construction work of the two cross-Mekong River super major bridges along the China-Laos railway.Read more
Champassak provincial authorities will soon order an inspection of Road No. 16 including accurate details on the construction budget as the government contemplates plans to purchase the project rights from the private construction company.Read more
More than 2,715.8 billion kip will be sourced and allocated for the promotion of small and medium enterprises (SME) to facilitate better access to finance to grow their businesses.Read more
While giving a guidance talk at the 11th Lao Business Forum on Jul 5, Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith emphasized the importance of strengthening the business sector through the improvement of business-related laws and regulations adding that doing so could help achieve the national socio-economic development goals.Read more
The Lao Coffee Festival reinforced the growing significance of the coffee industry in Laos and the tiny, landlocked Southeast Asian state’s aspirations to become a major player in this area despite the challenges that remain.Read more
Laos has begun to witness improvements in non-resource exports amid declining mining output and a government policy to boost growth in the manufacturing sectorRead more
The removal of barriers to bank lending and borrower withdrawals foreign currencies are set to benefit enterprise in Laos after the Bank of the Lao PDR removed restrictions in this regard, according to an announcement from the central bank.Read more
The strategic process run for MMG’s Sepon copper-mine in Laos has culminated in the sale of the operation for US$275 million to a Chinese buyer.Read more
All enterprises that have been registered and have obtained a tax ID will have to comply with the Value Added Tax Law.Read more
The Mekong River Commission (MRC) announced yesterday that Laos has formally notified the Commission of its intention to construct the Pak Lay dam on the mainstream of the Mekong River.Read more
As the only landlocked country in Southeast Asia and one of the least developed ones in the region, Laos seems to have different priorities on growth that are driving it pile on even more debt.Read more
A new IP law will come into force in the Southeast Asian nation of Laos this weekend, introducing trademark opposition procedures to the country for the first time. The new law also stipulates the creation of a new digital platform for brand rights and expands the range of images eligible for trademark protection in the jurisdiction, among other things.Read more
Work has begun on the construction of the new Kasemrad International Hospital Vientiane (KIH Vientiane), the largest private hospital in Laos, with an expected completion date in two years’ time.Read more
Laos and China on Monday officially set in motion a new air route between the two countries, aimed not only at boosting tourism but also other areas of cooperation.
The new flight will carry tourists and other travellers between Vientiane and Luang Prabang province in Laos and Hainan province in China.
Lao economists have urged the government to accelerate the privatisation of state enterprises that have been underperforming, as part of measures to improve its financial position.Read more
The injection of bank credit into the Lao economy has been on the decline after reaching a peak over the past several years, according to economists.Read more
Laos is an ASEAN member country in the heart of the Indochinese region, which has economic potentials and is opening up itself for cooperation with other countries.Read more
Lao government officials have launched a new push against corruption in the one-party communist state, with state inspection authorities stepping up investigations across the country and reporting in February that they had discovered up to $120,000 missing from state funds, sources in Laos said.Read more
More than US$5 billion is needed to build a railway linking Vientiane to a seaport in Vietnam’s Ha Tinh province, Vietnamese media reported on Friday, citing study results.Read more
The collection of revenue throughout the nation over the past four months has reached 5,297 billion kip, equal to only 20.81 percent of the figure targeted for the whole of 2018.Read more
The predicted economic slowdown in China, one of the top three foreign investors in Laos and an important trading partner, could affect the Lao economy, the government’s economic analysts have warned.Read more
Vientiane province’s Vangvieng district will officially be declared a tourism town in 2020 in terms of natural and cultural attractions, as part of the government’s efforts to promote the tourism industry.Read more
Lao economists have called on the government to pay more attention to preparations for the country’s expected graduation from the least developed country (LDC) status, to ensure sustainable development.Read more
The government has approved a minimum wage increase from the present 900,000 kip to 1.1 million kip a month, according to the Prime Minister’s Office.Read more
The construction cost of many projects with State investment have been found to be too expensive and exceeding the realistic value, inspectors have confirmed.Read more
The Lao government says the country will earn increased revenues from the energy and mines sector this year on the back of continued growth.Read more
Beijing-backed US$6.7 billion high-speed railway project threatens to bust the small nation’s already fragile financesRead more
A Lao company has officially opened an inland container depot (ICD) at the Boten Specific Economic Zone (SEZ) in Laos’ northern province of Luang Namtha.Read more
Next month marks Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith’s second year in power, a role few Communist Party apparatchiks have grasped with so much aplomb.Read more
In the 2018 Doing Business report, Lao PDR was ranked 141 out of 190, down from 139 the previous year.Read more
Landlocked by Myanmar, Cambodia, China, Thailand, and Vietnam, Laos is among the poorest economies of the world. Yet, in terms of gross domestic product (GDP), the economy continues to soar. Over the last decade, Laos has sustained an average growth rate of 7.8 percent, relatively higher than its neighboring countries.Read more
The Lao government has compiled a list of potential development projects to attract domestic and foreign investment. According to the list, local and foreign investors are invited with 27 projects in six provinces out of the country’s 18 provinces or citiesRead more
Laos has to strengthen the rule of law if it wants to become a competitive investment destination, according to a report from the World Bank.
“The country (Laos) faces issues that include weak regulatory effectiveness, control of corruption and rule of law,” the 2018-Doing Business in the Lao PDR report highlighted in its key findings.
It remains a jewel of French colonial architecture, you can savor some of the best croissants and baguettes east of Paris here, and even toddlers still learn the language of their bygone rulers. Luang Prabang, tucked into a river valley in the heart of Laos, survives as one of the last bastions of the old French Indochina.Read more
Lao enterprises have highlighted the perceived unprofessional practices of firms in the informal sector and high tax rates as the top constraints in investing in the country, according to a report from the World Bank.Read more
A Chinese company is beginning construction of a more than US$200-million tourism complex at the disused airfield in Vangvieng district. The project will include a five-star hotel, a modern private hospital, a public park and a planned casino.Read more
Owners of garment factories and other businesses in Laos are rejecting a proposal to raise the minimum wage by as much as one-third, saying the increase in expenses would force them to shut down operations, despite reports of workers seeking opportunities elsewhere due to low pay and high living costs.Read more
Source: Bloomberg China may steal all the headlines when it comes to its infrastructure push across Southeast Asia, but dataRead more
Twenty two local and foreign companies have signed agreements with relevant authorities to invest in the Thakhek Specific Economic Zone (TSEZ) since 2012.Read more
Laos and Chinese investors discussed several issues on the investment environment in Laos with the participants urging solution to issues related to visa issuance, low rubber prices and limited access to financial assistance.Read more
The current turmoil in the Asian markets, which has been going on 20 years after a much bigger disaster: the Asian financial crisis, began with the collapse of Thailand’s currency – the Baht – and spread across East Asia.
One of the contributing factors was high public debt in the affected countries, including Laos.
Construction of the 409-km Laos-China railway was 20.3 percent complete as of December 2017 after a whole year of operations, Lao authorities in charge said last week.
The US$5.986 billion project has a re-scheduled completion date of
Deputy Prime Minister Dr Sonexay Siphandone has urged the Ministry of Industry and Commerce to accelerate improvement of the business climate by cutting the number of days it takes to register a business.Read more
As Lao PDR’s economy grows and more companies begin conducting commercial activities here it will become increasingly important for businesses to protect and maintain their competitiveness in the market. A company’s failure to effectively protect its IP or to restrict infringement of its IP can lead to the loss of market share, revenue, reputation, opportunity and competitive advantage.Read more
The Vientiane administration has vowed to improve the investment climate to attract more private investment and facilitate business operations as part of measures to achieve 10.5 percent economic growth.Read more
The Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism (MOICT) has recently signed an agreement with BigBlue Agency Laos awarding them the preferred rights to setup all billboards related to the Visit Laos Year 2018 Campaign.Read more
Laos is among the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia: economic growth has averaged 7.8 per cent over the past decade. Despite the slow recovery of the global economy, the country’s growth rate was 6.9 per cent in 2017 and is expected to be 7 per cent in 2018. This is buoyed by an expansion in electricity production, manufacturing and agriculture, and it occurs despite a slight drop in tourist arrivals.Read more
As work progresses on a high-speed railway linking Laos with China, Beijing is pouring billions of dollars in aid and investment into its poorer neighbor to fund other projects, pulling it closer into China’s orbit, sources say.Read more
Vientiane authorities have agreed to the creation of a green lung for city residents and visitors in the form of a public park along the Mekong River in Sisattanak district.
The 31,500 square metre site is located behind the Don Chan Palace hotel and adjoins Chao Anouvong park.
While often portrayed as a pliant client to its larger neighbors, Vientiane’s balancing act is more astute than widely recognized
With its sparse 6.7 million population, land-locked Laos is often cast as a passive victim of pell-mell Chinese expansionism, a rich source of raw materials its giant neighbor craves and a virtual truck stop on the way to Thailand and the more prosperous countries of mainland Southeast Asia.
Source: KLP Two Chinese companies Wen Hao and Zhongtuo Guangfu have launched a multimillion dollar real estate project which willRead more
Vientiane authorities are seeking entrepreneurs to invest in and build the planned 15-km expressway linking the city to its north-eastern outskirts in Xaythany district.Read more
The government cabinet has ordered authorities in charge to speed up streamlining procedures to ease business operations and improve the investment climate.Read more
On November 7, 2017, the Lao Ministry of Industry and Commerce issued a formal notice, No.2633/MOIC, to all its offices across the country to fully recognize and abolish the capital requirement foreign owned general businesses.Read more
An international airport project scheduled for construction by a Chinese developer in northwestern Laos’s Bokeo province has been canceled so that an airport built earlier in the province may be upgraded instead, sources say.Read more
PHI Group, Inc., (www.phiglobal.com) (OTCQB:PHIL), a company focused on mergers and acquisitions and investments in natural resources, energy, agriculture, and special situations, announced today that its subsidiary American Pacific Resources, Inc. (“APR”) (https://aprgold.com/) has signed a Business Cooperation and Investment Agreement with a Lao company to develop a 67,000-acre gold mining project in the Province of Savannakhet, Laos.Read more
Slowing economic growth and mounting financial obligations have the communist country’s foreign debt distress risk running on highRead more
Chinese President Xi Jinping will make a state visit to Laos from November 13-14, the Lao Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a new release.Read more
Economists have called for the government to address power failures and blackouts in a move to further improve the business environment in Laos.Read more
InterContinental Hotels Group signed a management agreement with BIM Group to develop the first Holiday Inn hotel in Vientiane, Laos. This will be IHG’s third project with BIM Group.Read more
More than one trillion kip of state spending without approval from the National Assembly (NA) has been uncovered, the state top auditor told the parliament this week.Read more
The Lao People’s Democratic Republic successfully completed its largest and longest bond issue, with a 14 billion baht ($419 million) six-tranche offering in the Thai debt capital markets.Read more
While the Asia-Pacific region is experiencing population ageing at an unprecedented rate, the growing number of young people in Laos can provide a significant momentum in driving economic growth.Read more
B GRIMM POWER has taken an aggressive move in building and operating hydropower plants in Laos. The company officially opened on Friday the Xanamnoy 2 and Xekatam 1 hydropower plants in Champasak province that shares a border with Thailand’s Northeastern Ubon Ratchathani province.Read more
Laos-based Kolao Group has become the first private company from that country to tap the Thai corporate bond market, raising US$25 million in a private placement today.Read more
A Chinese state-owned enterprise said on Saturday that it will build a U.S. $40 million elephant conservation and breeding center in northwestern Laos’ Sayaboury province and develop it into a for-profit tourist attraction by the end of the year.Read more
China’s Comba Telecom has vowed to provide Lao users with improved service and mobile experiences after it successfully acquired a majority stake in Laos’s ETL Public Company and stepped up its management improvement efforts.Read more
PanAust Limited, Phu Bia Mining’s parent company, has reported continued high-performance production outcomes for the Phu Kham Copper-Gold and Ban Houayxai Gold-Silver Operations in its quarterly report for the three months to Jun 30, 2017.Read more
Lao government says it is ready to recruit new stakeholders for Lao Airlines as part of its efforts to overhaul state-owned enterprises.Read more
In case you missed it, Singapore’s reputation as an attractive holding company location for investments into Lao PDR recently went up a notch: after being signed way back in February 2014, the long-awaited tax treaty/double taxation agreement between Lao PDR and Singapore (the “DTA”) became effective on 1 January 2017.Read more
Business loans given to private companies have not increased this year since the government limited finance granted to developers for carrying out infrastructure projects.Read more
LINFOX has today become the first foreign logistics company to operate in Laos with the signing of a joint venture with the Lao Logistics Group in Vientiane.Read more
The choice of arbitration as a dispute resolution mechanism has risen in popularity as a time and cost-effective option to resolve commercial disputes. By including an arbitration clause in contractual arrangements, contracting parties may agree in advance on the seat and rules of arbitration, the size of the arbitration panel and even the rules to ….Read more
Investors who have overseas exposure should take advantage of the baht, which is close to this year’s highest level, by swapping the local currency for the US dollar, says Credit Suisse Thailand.Read more
Laos’ newly-amended Investment Promotion Law has moved to cut by half the maximum investment period for new concession projects to 50 years, down from the previous maximum period of 99 years.
The move is aimed at maximizing investment benefits for the Lao economy, an official from the Ministry of Planning and Investment involved in …
A newly-amended Investment Promotion Law has recently been promulgated, offering a variety of incentives to attract investment in both promoted sectors and hardship areas.
Businesses investing and operating in hardship communities (known as Area I),where infrastructure has not yet been developed, will enjoy favourable profit tax exemptions over ….
China overtook Vietnam to reclaim the number one position as the largest foreign investor in Laos last year.
China’s investment last year soared to over US$1 billion compared to US$88.9 million in 2015 while Vietnam’s investment decreased by US$4.5 million in 2016 after registering US$466 million in 2015.
Most of the investments are focused on the hydropower, mining and ….
The Labour Law (2013) came into effect on 28 October 2014, repealing and replacing the previous Labour Law (2006) and introducing a number of significant changes relating to the basic rules of employment in Lao PDR. As the Labour Law is now well into its third year in force, we consider one of its more significant yet often overlooked legal requirements for employers in Lao PDR – internal regulations or “work rules” of the workplace for employees.Read more
The Philippines is just one growth engine for the region stretching from Japan to Singapore, and infrastructure booms are just one source of booming economies. Here are the countries that the World Bank projects will grow fastest in East Asia and the Pacific this year:
1. Laos. This impoverished country with a strict Communist government will grow 7% this year because of investment in the …
Source: Vientiane Times The government is encouraging an increasing number of young people to enter the business world, especially thoseRead more
Authorities in the northern Lao province of Bokeo suspended the operations of 18 Chinese-backed banana plantations after they discovered widespread violations of the regulations governing the use of agricultural chemicals, government officials told RFA’s Lao Service.
“It has been a problem for the environment as the Chinese companies destroy the environment with their heavy use of chemicals,” a provincial official told ….
With the future of U.S.-China relations an open question for the incoming Donald Trump administration, many have focused on whether the president-elect’s promise to withdraw from negotiations over the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) will enhance Beijing’s growing influence in East Asia. But rather than hand-wringing over TPP’s ignominious failure, Asia watchers should turn their attention to …..Read more
The number of entrepreneurs registering businesses in Laos declined by 13 percent over the past 10 months of this fiscal year compared to the same period last year.
According to a recent government report, the number of registered businesses reached 1,666 units from October 2016 to May 2016 with registered capital amounting …..
Amendments to the Investment Promotion Law has shortened investment concession periods to ensure closer scrutiny of investors’ operations, Lao state-run daily Vientiane Times reported on Monday.
A draft amendment to the law, which was passed by Lao National Assembly (NA) last week, shortens the investment concession period from 99 years to 50 years, a change that was widely welcomed by NA members during ….
A Chinese developer plans to invest US$80 million to construct a water theme park next year at the That Luang Marsh Specific Economic Zone in Vientiane to attract domestic and foreign tourists.
The concept is to capture a slice of the increasing foreign visitor market to Laos while enticing domestic tourists and discourage them from travelling to neighbouring countries for their …..
One of the biggest local investors in the region, Krittaphong Group Co., Ltd. is pouring capital into various mega projects to build stronger business capacities in Laos, a developing nation in Asean and the world.
In Vientiane, major properties belonging to it include the Landmark Mekong Riverside Hotel, the five-star …..
Commercial banks in Laos have lowered the interest rates charged on loans and offered on kip accounts in line with a recent decision made by the Bank of the Lao PDR, hoping to stimulate economic activity.
Conversely banks have raised the interest rates offered on Thai baht and US dollar deposit accounts hoping to build up …..
Business leaders share views on roadmap to success; Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of IMF, discusses economic development at ASEAN Business Investment Summit 2016
Regional broadcaster, Channel NewsAsia, brought together business leaders and the government sector for two forums held during the ASEAN Business and Investment Summit (ABIS) 2016, at ….
Laos is not at risk of developing into a bubble economy despite the apparent ongoing building boom particularly in the capital, according to leading economists on Tuesday.
This is because overall growth in the real estate sector is actually quite sluggish and most investment is from overseas interests, mainly China and Vietnam.
Another factor preventing the forming of a Lao asset …..
Lao economists are optimistic that economic cooperation between Laos and Republic of Korea will surge after eight cooperation documents were signed by the two countries last week.
The agreements relate to industry and commerce, energy and mining, employment, social welfare, grant aid, construction of eco-friendly energy villages, healthcare and …..
A US$65-million-plus Mekong River Integrated Management Project in Pakse town, Champassak province is set to begin construction at the end of this year, officials in charge of the project have confirmed.
The project comprises four components including the construction of an embankment along the Mekong and Xedon rivers which totals over ….
Asia Aviation Capital Limited stands poised to benefit from parent company AirAsia Berhad’s recent deal for 100 Airbus A321neo aircraft, with 30 percent of the order expected to be allocated to the wholly-owned leasing unit.
The aircraft order, valued at $12.6 billion based on list prices, was announced at Farnborough Airshow last week. It is the first order placed by AirAsia Berhad for the ….
A slowing in China’s economy is having rippling effects on Laos, which has been described by the World Bank as having “once of the fastest growing” economies in the East Asia and Pacific region.
A decade long mining boom, combined with a rapid development of hydropower, has seen Laos’ growth rate reach over 7 percent a year, allowing national output to more than double, generating some ….
For five years, this remote town on the China-Laos border has lived in the shadow of more prosperous times.
On the main street, weeds grow where bustling shops and restaurants once stood. Old nightclub signs blister and peel in the tropical climate. Around town, abandoned multistory hotels loom like decaying sentinels, colonized by armies of jungle insects.
About a half-dozen years ago, Boten was a casino boomtown, a pinprick of neon amid thickly forested hills. Its gold-rush economy revolved ….
Promoted as one of Laos’ tourism destinations, Luang Prabang is angling for investors from Asean, including Thailand, by offering waiver of corporate income tax for up to six years as bait.
Luang Prabang has prioritised the tourism industry to drive its growth and lift Laotians from poverty under the 2020 strategic development plan, Governor Khamkhan Chamthavisouk said. “In general, Asean investors will be allowed to hold a 100-per-cent stake in …..
The government has reaffirmed its commitment to giving the green light to foreign businesses seeking opportunities for investment in the country.
This was the statement made by Deputy Prime Minister Dr Sonexay Siphandone during the launch of the 4th China-South Asia Expo and the 24th China Kunming Import and Export Commodities Fair on June 12.
In his opening remarks, Dr Sonexay said that although Laos does not share a border with the sea, based on….
Already one of the most popular quick-service restaurants in Asia, Texas Chicken recently finalised a deal that will increase the brand’s exposure in the Southeast region of the continent.
The deal, which features seven planned restaurants over the next few years, will make Texas Chicken the …
To enhance people to people contact between two South East Asian neighbours, India and Laos will soon have a direct flight connectivity as part the initiatives to increase cultural exchange and bilateral trade between two countries.
“Direct flight connectivity between the two countries is in final stage of approval and very soon India and Laos will have ….
All companies carrying out projects in Laos which resulted in deforestation are required to plant trees to offset the loss, forestry officials and researchers have stated.
But less than 10 percent of companies in question pursued the country’s laws and regulations, causing great loss in forestry resources over recent ….
More and more Japanese companies are investing in Laos given that the country is integrating with the region and the world and is improving its investment climate.
As of last month, the number of Japanese companies in Laos had climbed to 132, which is double the figure recorded in 2012, according to ….
The local garment industry has contracted in the wake of labour shortages, the Association of the Lao Garment Industry has reported.
From 2003 to 2011, the garment industry expanded but since 2012 a downward trend has prevailed. “Labour shortage issues have caused new investors to lose interest in Laos, instead shifting their capital to neighbouring countries, especially Cambodia, …….
International Monetary Fund (IMF) chief Christine Lagarde has lauded Laos’ economic achievements while cautioning that more work is needed to consolidate stability as the nation transitions from low-income country status.
Ms Lagarde is believed to be the first IMF chief to visit Laos since the country joined the ….
A Chinese national was killed and three others wounded in an attack in Laos, state media reported Wednesday, the second time this year workers from China have been targeted in the resource-rich nation.
The assault took place late Tuesday on property belonging to ….
The capital of Laos is a low-rise, low-key city, especially when compared with the hulking high-rises and bustling streets of better-known Southeast Asian cities such as Bangkok, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore.
But this once-sleepy city is fast shedding its sedate reputation due to a building boom ahead of international summits that will bring U.S. President Barack Obama, Chinese President Xi Jinping and a host of other world leaders to visit in ….
The dual-tranche issuance was rated “BBB+” by Tris Rating on December 9. The maturities are 10 and 12 years and the coupons are six-month Libor (London Interbank Offered Rate) plus 3.38 percentage points and 3.48 percentage points.
The notes were distributed to institutional investors under the …..
The Hongsa Power Plant (3x626MW), which was constructed by China, was inaugurated in Laos’ northern Xayaboury Province on Wednesday.
The project is currently the first and largest coal-fired power plant project in Laos, which comprises coal mines, transmission lines and power plant. The inaugural ceremony was ….
As Southeast Asia’s energy demands grow, Laos is banking on increased electricity exports to shore up its economy. The tiny country, which has a population of just under 7 million, has been opening a string of large-scale hydropower stations that will boost its total generation capacity by an estimated 70% by the end of the year compared to 2014.
Laos plans to sell 80% of the power it generates to neighboring countries in a bid to achieve ……
Founded in 2011 with the support of South Korea’s stock exchange (which owns 49%), the Laos Securities Exchange occupies a five story ultra-modern glass building in the capital city of Vientiane
The four companies listed are: Banque Pour Le Commerce Exterieur Lao (BCEL), EDL Generation (EDL-Gen), Lao World (LWPC), and Petroleum Trading Lao (PTL). Needless to say the stocks don’t trade daily, however ….
ON THE Bolaven Plateau, Bounthong Thepkaisone waded through his 5-hectare coffee plantation in Mai village, Pakxong district, in Laos’ Champasak province.
For Bounthong, producing coffee is his present and future. The same can be said for many of the 1,855 farmer families in his community that make up the Bolaven Plateau Coffee Producers Cooperative (CPC), an organisation of ….
Foreigners are prohibited from operating trading outlets or shops whose investment cost is less than 8 billion kip (US$983,380), so that small-scale businesses are reserved solely for Lao nationals, according to a new regulation.
Under the ruling, foreigners are prohibited from investing in a specific trading shop, convenience store, mini-mart, wholesale or ……
The government has set an economic growth target of 7.5 percent for this and next year in an attempt to decrease the trade deficit.
The government measures to meet the planned target received support from the National Assembly (NA) at its ordinary session which concluded last week.
In the session’s draft resolution on approving the government plan, the assembly expressed support for the government targeting 102 trillion kip (around US$12.74 billion) in gross domestic product (GDP) to be created and 14.9 million kip of income per capita this fiscal year which ….
The National Assembly (NA) yesterday passed the Business Competition Law in a move to ensure that competition between businesses in Laos is carried out in a fair and just manner to boost economic growth.
The decree has only five chapters with 17 articles, while the draft law comprises of nine parts, eight chapters and 84 articles. “Therefore, there is a need to upgrade the decree into law. The content of the law is comprehensive and covers all areas of …..
Quiet Lao bourse looks to attract more companies, possibly with the help of dual listings.
Having been open since October 2010, the slow-moving Lao Securities Exchange (LSX) is looking to raise the number of listed companies to about 25 by 2020 from the six that are now trading.
“Our aim is to have a least 25 companies listed by 2020 and we are looking at encouraging many state-owned enterprises and private-sector companies to be on the ……
To celebrate the party’s achievements in the past 60 years, a large gathering of senior party leaders and high-ranking party officials was held at which party secretary-general and president of the Lao PDR Choummaly Sayasone delivered the keynote address.
He asserted that the party has remained relevant because it adopted the policy of “self-construction and self-improvement to enhance its strength with endless flexibility.” He cited the so-called renovation policy of 1986 which “replaced the bureaucratically centralized economic mechanism and subsidy-based administration with a ……
President of Laos Choummaly Sayasone and President of Myanmar U Thein Sein on Saturday officially opened the Laos-Myanmar Friendship Bridge, creating a road link across the Mekong River.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Mr Thongloun Sosoulith said the bridge was a symbol of the close cooperation between Laos and Myanmar. It also reflected the friendship, good relations, solidarity and mutual understanding between the ……
The number of people seeking to do businesses in Laos last year fell by more than half compared to the figure recorded in the previous year, according to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
The Ministry attributed the shortfall to some difficulties that hindered people from doing businesses and other external factors including the impact from the economic crisis, monetary policy and …..
With a greater focus on manufacturing, a young population and a president committed to stable growth, the Philippines is pulling ahead
The Philippines is no longer the `sick man of Asia’, Economic Planning Secretary Arsenio Balisacan declared yesterday after the economy grew a better-than-estimated 6.9 percent last quarter from a year earlier. That capped three successive years of above-6-percent growth, placing it well ahead of Thailand, once a growth engine of ….
As economies in the West remain shaky, Southeast Asia beckons investors. But alongside some of the world’s fastest growing economies is the risk of corporate corruption in a region where winning deals still sometimes means greasing the right wheels. Last month, the French engineering giant Alstom SA pleaded guilty to …..Read more
To feed its growing hunger for fuel, Thailand is close to completing one of Southeast Asia’s largest coal-fired power plants. The location? Just over the border in Laos.
The $3.7 billion project can supply power for two million households in Thailand. But heavy resistance to toxic emissions from burning coal, the dirtiest of all fossil fuels, has prompted power companies there to build it in Laos, where standards and opposition are …..
The holders of some 806,579 land plots have been issued with land titles, representing 80.66 percent of the five-year plan to issue land titles for 1 million plots by 2015, according to an official report.
Officials in charge will strive to issue 1 million land titles by the end of ….
Indonesia, Vietnam and Myanmar are the top three destinations in Asean for US companies for future expansion despite many challenges, a recent regional survey has found.
Brunei and Laos hold the least interest for respondents in the survey.
The “Asean Business Survey Outlook 2015”, carried out by the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) Singapore and the US Chamber of Commerce, revealed dissatisfaction with …..
Export-Import Bank of China (EximBank), the official export credit agency of the Chinese government, has suspended loans for infrastructure and construction projects in Laos, saying it would prefer to only finance mining and hydro-power ventures, according to Lao sources.
The move is seen by some as an indication of Beijing’s concern over its neighboring communist ally’s ability to repay loans for such projects as roads and bridges in the absence of immediate guarantees.
In the mining sector, for example, natural resources act as ….
The Chinese developer has spent over US$100 million to build infrastructure facilities and condos at That Luang Marsh Specific Economic Zone (SEZ) in Vientiane.
The infrastructure projects include a 50-hectare lagoon, road access to the zone, installation of electricity and water supply facilities and a drainage system.
The Chinese developer is now focusing on building 12 condominium blocks with 18 floors. The company is expecting to spend US$14.5 million to build each block and plans to sell them within 5 years after completion for …..
Major Cineplex Group Plc, Thailand’s largest cinema operator, is looking to expand further in Indochina as the region’s entertainment industry develops.
“Cambodia, Myanmar and Laos are fresh entertainment markets, and we should take this opportunity to establish our presence in these countries before our rivals,” said Major Cineplex chairman Vicha Poolvaraluck.
Its first cinema with five screens would open by the end of this year at the ……
At least 40 hotels, including five international chains, are scheduled to open in Laos over the next five years as the country becomes a more popular tourist destination.
IInternational brands Ramada, InterContinental, Crown Plaza, Sofitel and Marriott are set to open hotels in the capital by 2019. Three global brands – Mercure, Ibis and Best Western – have already opened their doors in Vientiane, and one regional brand has entered the World Heritage Site of Luang Prabang.
Furthermore, 25-30 three- and four-star hotels are set to open in the capital, with some in ….
CapitaLand’s wholly-owned serviced residence business unit, The Ascott Limited (Ascott), has secured its first franchise agreements in Vientiane, the capital city of Lao People’s Democratic Republic (Laos), and Bali, Indonesia. The agreements are for an operating serviced residence in Vientiane that will be rebranded as a 116-unit Somerset Vientiane in the fourth quarter of ….Read more
The Bank of Lao PDR, the nation’s central bank, has announced a suspension of the establishment of new commercial banks in Laos, as it moves to evaluate the current situation in the country’s banking industry.
The suspension applies to investors and legal identities who are not representing an existing bank or group of banking businesses which already have operations in foreign countries. It will be imposed from ….
Toyota Boshoku Corporation has begun manufacturing automobile seat covers in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Manufacturing is being undertaken by TOYOTA BOSHOKU LAO CO., LTD., which was recently established as a satellite to support automobile seat production in Thailand. The seat covers will be supplied to the Thai production base.
As a member nation of the East-West Economic Corridor*1, Laos is convenient for distribution to Thailand, and has stable ….
PANAUST’S long-term supportive shareholder has turned hostile, proposing a $1.4 billion takeover bid which the target has immediately said materially undervalues its copper and gold assets.
Guangdong Rising Assets Management Co., a state-owned Chinese investment group, offered to take control of PanAust Ltd. (PNA) in a cash bid that values the Laos-focused copper producer at A$1.5 billion ($1.4 billion).
Buying PanAust would give Guangdong Rising control of mines in Laos as well as the ….
SIAM CEMENT GROUP’S board of directors has approved a Bt10-billion investment to build its first cement factory in Laos, as the group continues to expand in Asean.
President and chief executive Kan Trakulhoon said the 1.8-million-tonne-a-year cement plant would be established in Khammouane province, Laos, and was scheduled to begin production in the second quarter of 2017.
“Demand for building materials in the region has continued to grow, especially in Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar. This cement plant will mainly serve demand in …..
The Japan External Trade Organization on Monday held an opening ceremony for its Laos office in the capital city of Vientiane.
The new office, expected to be fully operational in July, will be the 74th overseas base and 10th in Southeast Asia for JETRO, a public body which supports foreign investment by Japanese businesses through its network covering ….
Logistic facilities at Thanalaeng Train Station in Vientiane have begun to take shape after eight months of construction, according to a Lao railway official.
The Lao Railway Authority’s Railway Management Division Chief, Mr Somsana Rasaphone said recently that the new facilities, which will enable the train station to provide freight services, are now some 23 percent complete.
Construction of the container yard and lifting facilities at the train station began at the end of last year and was scheduled to be completed within 18 months. The Lao government hopes to open the rail freight service ahead of the establishment of …
The government has vowed to address any barrier that hinders business operation and investment in Laos to boost socio-economic development of the country.
Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong yesterday told business executives that the government would take all their recommendations and proposals into the cabinet’s agenda in a move to bring about a good business operation and investment friendly climate.
Business operators called for the government to introduce clear export and import related policy giving more incentives for their …
A number of businesses ranging from construction firms to office equipment sellers need to revise their business plans following the government announcing its belt tightening policy, according to economists.
“Business leaders in Laos need to adjust their business plans to the reality of the situation so they can run their businesses smoothly,” the Lao National Economic Research Institute said.
In October, the government stopped paying state employees a monthly living allowance of 760,000 kip (US$95) per person as a measure to pay off the country’s debt.
It also announced a suspension of ….
Japanese electronics maker Mitsubishi will invest US$8 million (260 million baht) in its first production plant in Laos.
MMC Electronics Laos Co signed a lease with an industrial park on the outskirts of the capital, the Vientiane Times reported.
Construction of the plant, which will produce thermostats and temperature control equipment for air conditioners, refrigerators, rice cookers and cars, is to begin immediately and be completed by ….
Laos and China have confirmed they will push forward with the Lao-Chinese railway project while the two countries are still looking for an effective method of cooperation that serves their mutual interest.
The Lao and Chinese governments have come up with a plan to build the 421km railway, which would link Vientiane to the Laos-China border in the coming years.
The Lao side also suggested that China should expand its investment in hydro and lignite power plants as well as provide loans for irrigation development in the central provinces in order to ensure ….
Leading ethnic Chinese business people running companies in Thailand are investigating the US$1.6-billion That Luang Specific Economic Zone (SEZ) in Vientiane for possible future investment.The delegation comprised about 15 business people who own factories in Thailand notably related to salt, rice, steel manufacturing and other construction-related businesses.
The That Luang Marsh SEZ is one of the government’s mega-projects that will play a significant role in boosting the socio-economic development of Laos. The government signed a ……
The government has designated an area in the Savan-Xeno Special Economic Zone in the central province of Savannakhet for sole use by Japanese factories after learning that many firms are looking for new production bases.
“We have designated Area B in the Special Economic Zone for ……
Japanese investment in Laos has skyrocketed and the prospects remain strong looking forward, according to a leading economic expert in the field.
With strong forecasts for growth, Japanese investors see Laos as a new production base following the improvement of the country’s infrastructure, legal framework and the availability of cheap labour. The latest investors from these countries include Nikon and Toyota, which will both be building part of their production bases in Laos.
The value of Japanese investment in Laos in 2013 reached …..
Danish workwear maker Mascot is continuing its expansion in Southeast Asia with the opening of a newly built factory in Laos.
The new 9,000 square metre production unit becomes the fourth that it operates in the region, and will complement the company’s three existing factories in northern Vietnam.
“Since we obtained the investment license, it has taken less than a year to complete the project, and I am very much looking forward to seeing the first ‘made in Laos’ Mascot-products,” said owner and CEO Michael Grosbøl.
It is expected that the workforce at the Laos factory will reach …..
Corruption remains a threat to Laos, and global development, despite the government making progress to tackle the problem, officials noted at an International Anti-Corruption Day event.
According to the annual Corruption Perceptions Index prepared by global anti-corruption body Transparency International, Laos is currently ranked at 140 out of the 177 countries surveyed for the index, which scores countries on how corrupt their public sectors are seen to be. Last year Laos was ranked 160.
“Corruption is one of many negative phenomena having a large effect on ….
Local and foreign investors will find it easier to buy and sell stocks on the Lao Securities Exchange (LSX) with the launch of the Home Trading System earlier this month.
LSX, a Lao-Korean joint venture, launched the new stock trading service so investors can place orders to buy and sell stocks from anywhere in the world with internet access.
People wishing to trade on the LSX are advised to contact one of the two associated security companies, who can provide information on the trading system. Traders must install home trading software and open a bank account so they can access the online system before……
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Laotian Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong agreed Sunday during their summit to seek the launch of a security dialogue framework.
“I would like to come to a mutual understanding (with Laos on various issues) through dialogue between our foreign and defense officials,” Abe said.
Abe also unveiled Tokyo’s decision to extend yen loans to help Laos expand an airport terminal to back its efforts to improve its infrastructure. In other support for Laos’ development, Abe offered Japanese help for the Southeast Asian country’s health and medical care systems, Japanese officials said.
Abe is on the second and last leg of a two-day trip to Southeast Asiathat took him to ….
The dream of a relaxed and enjoyable retirement is something we all aspire to. Unfortunately not all of us plan well enough to ensure we have sufficient funds to live out our dreams. So what is it we might be getting wrong ?
Firstly, very few people take into account inflation. Our pension providers will quote us a figure that in today’s terms looks reasonable. However if inflation runs on average of …
Before Thailand experienced its crippling floods in 2011 and the minimum wage hike in 2012, the Savan-Seno Special Economic Zone (SEZ), the first of its kind in Laos, was struggling to attract foreign companies. But now the location is gaining notice as a new choice for businesses looking for a low-cost, low-risk location.
Two of the pioneers at the site in Savannakhet have been Toyota Boshoku Asia, a major supplier of seats and interior parts for Toyota, and Nikon, the Japanese camera maker. Their presence is expected to draw other suppliers in the ….
Laos will no longer grant new concessions for casinos in special economic zones on its soil. It will also overhaul plans for such areas so they have a clear focus and right direction for economic development, Deputy Prime Minister Somsavat Lengsavad said in an interview recently.
“Casinos in special economic zones such as the one in Boten (in the north) have made no good contribution to development and even affected relations between China and Laos, so we don’t want them anymore,” Somsavat said.
The idea to end casino concessions in special economic zones came with a plan to review….
Growth in the investment sector has remained stable despite the government last year halting new investment proposals for mineral extraction and rubber and eucalyptus plantations. An official told the slowdown has yet to impact on the country’s investment sector.
“Although we have suspended new proposals for mining and rubber and eucalyptus plantations until December 31, 2015, domestic and foreign investment in Laos has remained stable,” he said.
“The hydropower and agriculture sectors are starting to slightly replace the loss in the mining sector,” he said, adding that many more businesses are interested in investing in Laos…..
Both local and foreign investors operating businesses in Laos have been encountering problems stemming from the chronic labour shortage. “We are experiencing an annual shortfall of labourers in excess of 31,000 people,” said a senior advisor to the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Mr Onesy said that in the midst of this labour shortage, some 100,000 people are crossing the border to seek work in other countries, and there are no controls in place to stop this exodus. Many areas in the central and southern provinces have no young people to work in the rice fields since most prefer to work in other countries, leaving the job ……
Thailand will discuss with Laos a plan to double bilateral trade to US$8 billion (Bt240 billion) by 2015 from $4 billion in 2011.
The meeting between the Thai Commerce Ministry and the Lao Ministry of Industry and Commerce on August 8-9 will discuss the expansion of bilateral trade and investment, aiming to double bilateral trade value by 2015.
Thailand would urge more Thai businesses to invest in Laos. Thailand is currently the third-largest investor in Laos after China and Vietnam. Most of the Thai business investment in Laos is in the mining, energy, agriculture, forestry, and ……
Economic growth in 2012-13 should reach 8.3 percent if government and foreign investment projects are implemented as planned, according to the National Economic Research Institute (NERI).
The figure was reported yesterday at the ‘Lao Economy in 2012 and Outlook for 2013′ meeting, organised by the institute with support from the World Bank. The economy should continue to grow by 8.2 percent in 2013-14 and 14-2015, according to the NERI.
GDP per capita reached 10.8 million kip (about US$1,349). The agricultural sector grew by 2.8 percent, accounting for 26.7 percent of GDP; the industrial sector grew by ….
Private firms have become a major driving force of Lao economic growth. In 2011 domestic and foreign private firms contributed 16 percent of total Gross Domestic Product (GDP), becoming the largest contributor to economic growth.
It is not surprising to learn that domestic and foreign private companies are playing a significant role in driving the economy. The government adopted a market oriented policy in 1986, allowing the private sector to take part in economic development after a decade of running a centrally planned economy. The government has also made a strong commitment to improve the business climate, to encourage the private sector to invest and do business in Laos. One of the government’s major achievements has been the easing of restrictions on ……
The Lao economy is expected to grow by about 7.7 percent in 2013 as resource based industries, manufacturing and services continue to generate solid growth, according to a key Asian Development Bank (ADB) report.
According to the publication, the substantial investment flowing into hydropower and mining, coupled with the construction of hotels, offices and residential buildings, will drive this growth. “The outlook for the Lao economy in 2013 is strong, as we see the economy starting a gradual diversification from its overdependence on ……
Toyota established a new vehicle interior components production company, TOYOTA BOSHOKU LAO CO., LTD. in the Savannakhet Province in April. This is the first time the Toyota Boshoku group has built a production base in Laos.
The new company will serve as a satellite complementing the Toyota Boshoku group production base in Thailand. It will start producing …
Russia is returning to Indochina not as a seller of weapons, but by means of investment in these countries by increasing tourism, developing small and medium business and buying real estate. Growing wealth of the Russians, warm climate, and the decline of interest in the dangerous Middle East sector has led to a reorientation of their interest towards Thailand, Vietnam and Laos.
It is tourism, and not large business that plays a crucial role in the struggle for geopolitical influence in Indochina today. Indeed, in ….
We all know where our favorite camera brands hail from, but have you ever looked at the sticker on the bottom of your camera to see where it was made? If not, you might be in for a surprise.
Nikon has revealed that it is establishing a new factory in Laos. The Japanese manufacturer is investing approximately 6.3 million US dollars in the project, and expects to have around 800 employees in a 10,000 square meter facility once production begins……