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Govt pledges to provide better investment settings

(KPL) The Government of Laos made a commitment in the promotion and
attraction of direct investments from oversea in large investment projects
and priority projects of the Government.

The commitment was made during Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh attended
a workshop on economic investment in Lao PDR, held mid-May in Tokyo.

The Government has acknowledged how importance in the promotion of
investment in small-medium enterprises sectors of economy, agriculture,
industry, handcraft and services.

PM Bouasone has also confirmed that the Government would provide a better
promotion environment of investments in these sectors because country’s
landscape and potential is appropriated.

In addition, the Government has paid its efforts to create a lot of
measures for promoting foreign direction investment by amending investment
law and decrees so as to provide more facility and rapidly and prompt
investment and upgrade its service as one stop service.

“Lao PDR is a country with a strong political stability, safe country,
majority of Lao people hold Buddhist religious and fine unique culture and
hospitality manners, PM continued. Despite Laos is a landlocked country it
is not a sole separated country, but, by contrast, Laos is a transit
country that linked to the Mekong Basin countries with
East-west-north-south economic corridor in the Asian Pacific,” said PM.
The Government of Laos has conducted an economic renovation policy since
1986. Over the past two decades, many law, mechanism and regulations on
state governance have been improved in line with marketing economic and
liking economy with other countries in the region and world as well as
ASEAN member countries.

In 2008, Laos will participate in ASEAN Free Trade Area (AFTA) and will be
preparing to become as member of World Trade Organisation.

The main goal of Laos is to leave the country out of least developed
country status by 2020, so that the gross domestic production has to be
grown by 7.5 percent a year in order to fulfil its ambition effort the
Government will focus on investment in socio-economic development. Along
with the improvement of infrastructure, state governance and
macro-economic with a transparency and judgement.

For the private investment and foreign development investment will receive
a continuous promotion by concentrating on “economy as a main core”
depending on the economic growth as a main key and pay attention to human
development resource as well as the conservation of society and national
culture and national unique.

The investment promotion sector consists of agriculture and forestry is an
effective use of lands and people participatory promotion base on people
benefit such as chemical free cash crops plantation and animal raising
with a high benefit. It also promotes the movement of finished products
processing or makes the goods value-added.

For the electricity sector such as hydroelectricity that Laos has set its
target goal as a regional electricity source, which have negotiated to
expand market with Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia.

The mining sector is a potential resource, which the primary survey proved
that there are many kinds of minerals resources reasoned for the
Government has approved many foreign to exploit and proceed.

Thanks to the country is located in the central part among many countries
therefore Laos has become as a transit country and a gateway access to
widely market. The government has a promotion policy in the investment and
provides various services, including passengers transportation and the
creation of special economic zone.

For the tourism is a priority sector that the government has promoted
culture, natural, historical tourism. Now the foreign tourists are able to
visit Laos through 17 international checkpoints, of which 13 checkpoints
provide arrival visa for tourists and three international airports.

In order to promote tourism Laos has exempted visa for eight countries in
the ASEAN member countries and short visa exemption for Japanese people.

Now Laos has a total of 985 tourism sites, of which 253 cultural tourism
sites and 570 natural sites.

Of out figure there are 364 tourism sites have just opened and there are
621 site are waiting for development.

Between 1990 to 2006, the number of visitors has jumped from 14,000 people
to 1.2 million people, of which over 23,000 people were Japanese tourists.

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