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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs    29 October 2012 

Asia-Europe Business Forum to boost investment in Laos


The 13th Asia-Europe Business Forum in Vientiane will create opportunities for Lao businesspeople to discuss cooperation ventures with foreign partners.
The two-day Forum will begin on November 3.

“Normally business operators not only want to attend forums but also take these opportunities to seek business cooperation with others,” Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry Vice President Oudeth Souvannavong said at a press conference in Vientiane yesterday.

“The forum will create opportunities for Lao businesses to seek overseas partners in order to expand their operations.”

Oudeth, who is deputy head of the Forum Organising Committee Secretariat, said they expect 300 delegates to attend the forum, immediately prior to the 9th Asia-Europe Meeting Summit.
About half of the companies attending the forum will be from Laos and most of them are major operations, Oudeth said. Most of the foreign companies attending the event are top international and regional energy traders, logistics firms, mining companies and banks.

Oudeth welcomed the pending acceptance of Laos as a World Trade Organisation member this month and also the improvement of the Lao business climate ahead of the forum, hoping the good news will attract more foreign investment.

He said the forum will also be a good opportunity for foreign businesses to gauge the true investment climate, opportunities and development potential in Laos, noting that there are many aspects that international reports on Laos do not reveal.

“The actual state of development in Laos is perhaps better than what is reported. Visiting business operators can see for themselves the true situation here and how well we are doing,” Oudeth said.
He said one of the big opportunities that forum participants will have is the chance to meet Asian and European summit leaders. They will also have the chance to voice their opinions for the leaders to consider.

Preparations for the Asia-Europe Business Forum are 80 per cent complete regarding the forum's content and 90 per cent complete regarding meeting venues and accommodation for participants.
The theme of the 13th Asia-Europe Business Forum is "Caring for the Earth for Sustainable Development".

The forum has invited a number of well known panelists from Asia and Europe to speak and discuss the global economic situation, examining issues such as the European debt crisis and the slowdown in the Chinese and Indian economies.

Forum participants will also discuss the opportunities and challenges that businesses in Asia and Europe are facing. One of the discussion topics is corporate social responsibility.
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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More






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