On 6th October 2015, the Laos Investment Seminar was organized in Tokyo, Japan by Ministry of Planning and Investment of Lao PDR and ASEAN Japan Centre. This event attracted about 250 Japanese investors.
On the remarks of H.E. Mr. Somdy Douangdy, Minister of Planning and Investment, keynote speaker of the seminar, Minister Somdy said that the seminar is among the activities to celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Laos and Japan Diplomatic Relation.
The speech covered the 5 year Social and Economic Development Plan 2016-2020 and key targets that are needed. One of key elements is the contribution of the domestic and foreign investments. Thus, the investment environment improvement and investment liberalization are significant to attract Japanese Investors to Laos and contribute to the development of the Lao PDR and embrace with the mutual benefits of both sides. The liberalizing the service sector is one of the top priority of the Lao Government agenda, the equity participation of the foreign investors is up to 100% for the wholesales/retails business and 70% for the tourism business.
Minister Somdy and Ambassador Khenthong Nuanthasing, Lao Ambassador to Japan, expressed the common point that the special economic zone would play crucial role in attracting the Japanese investments. There are over 10 SEZs located in strategic locations around the country.
Three speakers from SEZ of Laos shared vivid information of their SEZs and how the Japanese investments would take the opportunities and benefits from investing in the zones.
Savan Park is located in Savannakhet Province (central part of Lao PDR) which takes full advantage of the East-West Economic Corridor. This SEZ covers the total land area of 234 Hectare and 42 enterprises registered in the zone.
Pakxe-Japan SME Specific Economic Zone is located in Champasack province (southern part of Lao PDR). This SEZ is divided to three zones covering about 205.5 Hectare of totally land area. This new SEZ established in August 2015 and welcomed 6 enterprises.
Thakhek Special Economic Zone is located in Khammouane Province (central part of Lao PDR). It is few minutes from the 3rd Mekong Friendship Bridge between Laos and Thailand. This SEZ has about 1244 Hectare for the future development.
SEZs in Lao PDR features several incentives which are considered having several competitive incentives.