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EDL Appoints Key Officials For Enterprise Reforms

Source: Vientiane Times

The Electricite du Laos (EDL), a state-funded enterprise, has appointed and reshuffled a number of senior officials as part of efforts to boost efficient management and increase profits in business operations in order to contribute to socio-economic development in the years ahead.

The senior officials will lead working committees for each branch across the country to support the implementation of the EDL’s state-funded enterprise reforms.

The appointment ceremony was chaired by the Deputy Minister of Finance, Dr Phouthanouphet Xaysombath, who is also the Head of the Committee for reforming the operations of state-funded enterprises, including the EDL. The Managing Director of the EDL, Mr Chanthaboun Soukaloun, led the ceremony that was attended by senior ministry officials and the Deputy Heads of the Committee.

The formation of the committee is part of the government’s efforts to strengthen business operations across all state enterprises.

Following the appointment and reshuffle of senior EDL officials, the committee disseminated information on various frameworks and measures to enable the power utility to earn more revenues, pay off debts it has accumulated, and tackle numerous challenges and unresolved issues it has faced over the years.

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Speaking at the event, Dr Phouthanouphet said the committee has been changed several times over the past few years but the newly formed panel expects to address numerous challenges.

“After the announcement and reshuffle of the working officials, there will be a number of discussions to seek ways for more efficient methods of addressing challenges and other unresolved issues,” he said.

Recently, the committee was re-established under a Prime Ministerial Decision, with the Deputy Minister of Finance appointed as its Head. The Deputy Minister of Energy and Mines, Mr Thongphath Inthavong, was appointed its Deputy Head. Senior officials from relevant bodies, including EDL’s Managing Director, Mr Chanthaboun Soukaloun, are part of the committee.

Dr Phouthanouphet briefed the gathering about the committee’s framework and the expected outcomes of each field of work to be implemented in the coming years.

The reform of the EDL follows the poor performance of a large number of state enterprises, which are making huge losses and creating massive public debt. In addition, members of the National Assembly (NA) have pushed for further reform of state enterprises after learning that similar firms in neighbouring countries have become engines for success, while those in Laos continue to run up losses.

The EDL’s Managing Director, Mr Chanthaboun Soukaloun, praised relevant officials for their contributions to past achievements in the field of reforms and called for more active dedication for significant outcomes in future.

“It is hoped the newly appointed officials will contribute to stronger business performance and get familiar with the new rules, conditions and environment for the reform process and apply the newly restructured working methods,” he said.

The government is hoping that the reform of the EDL will prevent the loss of assets and create conditions conducive to strong business performance. The reforms also comply with the rules of a market-based economy and are an attempt to enhance the EDL’s operations and contribute to the country’s socio-economic development.

The reforms will also facilitate the implementation of the government’s efforts to tackle economic and financial problems that have become the top priority in the national agenda.