(Seminars' honorary guests,Mr. Daisuke Hiratsuka, Executive Vice President of JETRO; Dr. Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, Vice Minister of Planning and Investment; Professor Yasuhiro Yamada, Special Assistant to the President of ERIA on CLMV issues (from left to right))

On September 30, 2015, the Policy Recommendation Seminar to Government of Lao PDR “Enhancing Industry in Lao PDR: Services Liberalization, Simplification of Investment of Investment Procedures and Human Resource Development” was organized by JETRO, IDE-JETRO, ERIA and Ministry of Planning and Investment. This event welcomed about 100 guests from the Japanese Embassy, Ministries concerned and local University

On the remarks of Dr. Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, honorary guest of the seminar, it 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 Vice Minister was strongly encourage JETRO, IDE-JETRO and ERIA support the liberalization and improve the business environment. Thus, it would attract Japanese Investors and contribute to the development of the Lao PDR and embrace with the mutual benefits of both sides.

(The Group Photo Session attended by VIP guests from Ministry of Planning and Investment, JETRO, IDE-JETRO, ERIA and representatives from line ministries.)

This seminar is realized with further request by H.E. Mr. Thongsing Thammavong, Prime Minister of Lao PDR to Mr. Hiroyuki Ishige, President of JETRO, to break down the policy recommendations into more practical and pragmatic policies and to have a seminar for government officials of Lao PDR. Dialogue between the government officials of Lao PDR and JETRO/IDE-JETRO staffs was also hold in this seminar. The organizers shared the common expectation that the seminar would create realistic policy views, and help Lao PDR to graduate from the least developed countries in 2020.

The forum’s Chairperson, Dr. Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, Vice Minister of Planning and Investment

On September 19, 2015, the 12th Lao-China Business and Investment Forum was organized by China ASEAN Secretariat and Department of Commerce of Guangxi Zhuang; and sponsors by Ministry of Planning and Investment and Ministry of Industry and Commerce of Lao PDR. This event could attract over 200 Chinese potential investors from various sectors such as logistics, service, agriculture and health care.

On the opening remarks of Dr. Bounthavy Sisouphanthong, chairperson of the forum , it 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 Vice Minister was strongly encourage the Chinese Investors to seek the investment opportunities and contribute to the development of the Lao PDR and embrace with the mutual benefits of both sides.

The 12th Lao-China Business and Investment Forum was organized back to back with the 12th China-ASEAN EXPO or known as the CAEXPO.

On the same day of that forum, the 12th CAEXPO Round Table Meeting on Investment Cooperation was hold. The representatives from the investment promotion agencies from ASEAN and China shared their common goals to facilitate the trade and investment under the theme of maritime time cooperation. 

Ms Sengdeune Sayasone (second from right), Head of Investment Promotion Division, Investment Promotion Department, Ministry of Planning and Investment

Ms. Sengdeune Sayasone, the preventative from Lao PDR emphasized 3 key areas of future cooperation among China and ASEAN member states.

- International Capacity Cooperation: there is a clear need for advance capacity that Laos needs in short-term and long-term. As for the short term, the government welcomes the expertise and transfer know-how in potential industries such energy, manufacturing, agriculture, education, healthcare and service. As for long-term, the government focuses on the human resource development. 

- Logistics Parks: Lao government aims to transform Laos from the land-locked to become the lank-link country. Given that strategic location, we have linked our land with other neighboring countries various means such as building the bridge to connect Laos with Thailand and Myanmar; several bridges across the country; road upgrading to regional standard; opening new international checkpoints for goods and people; railway development plan; and open the direct flights to major Asian cities. Apart from that, we have a clear policy to develop the logistics parks. The Boten Logistics Parks will be one of the leading parks in northern part of Laos to facilitate the moving of goods across ASEAN and China. In Vientiane Capital, we also have a plan to develop another logistics Parks close to the Mekong Bridge.

- Sectors, industrial Cooperation Fields and Projects: the Lao government would like to 13th CAEXPO support the infrastructure development aiming to enable the land link initiative and facilitating the investment and trade. One of the key project is the railway development project connecting Kunming to Vientiane Capital city. We strongly believe the development of this railway would enhance the construction of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road which would integrate the ASEAN and China in higher level.

On June 11, 2015, the Workshop on the Final Consultation on Public-Private Partnership (PPP) Draft Decree with Public and Civil Society Sectors was organized by Ministry of Planning and Investment and supported by the Asian Development Bank.

Mr. Manothong Vongsay, chairperson of the workshop went over objectives of the event and background of the draft of PPP Decree. The key objective is to welcome constructive comments from the concerned ministries and the civil society sector aiming to ensure the PPP Decree contains all necessary information. The chairperson also encourage the participants to express their thoughts in order to ensure effectiveness of managing the future PPP projects and bringing the benefits to all concerned parties.

The draft of PPP decree has been over several consultations and been revised 6 times. The several revisions were made in corresponding to comments/suggestions from wide range communities, for instance the concerned government agencies, private sector and as well as the international organizations. The most recent revision was brought the comments from IFC into the draft. The comments from JICA will be considered and put into the draft. 

This final consultation workshop attracted several comments from both public, civil society and private sectors. It covered several aspects such as the definition, volume, mechanism, interpretation, scope, wording, roles, scale of the projects, etc.

The new revision of the PPP Decree will be made in according to those comments. Then, it will be submitted to Ministry of Justice and Government Office for further consideration and approval. 

A public–private partnership from the open source site said it is a government service or private business venture which is funded and operated through a partnership of government and one or more private sector companies. These schemes are sometimes referred to as PPP, P3 or P3.

PPP involves a contract between a public sector authority and a private party, in which the private party provides a public service or project and assumes substantial financial, technical and operational risk in the project. In some types of PPP, the cost of using the service is borne exclusively by the users of the service and not by the taxpayer.[1] In other types (notably the private finance initiative), capital investment is made by the private sector on the basis of a contract with government to provide agreed services and the cost of providing the service is borne wholly or in part by the government. Government contributions to a PPP may also be in kind (notably the transfer of existing assets). In projects that are aimed at creating public goods like in the infrastructure sector, the government may provide a capital subsidy in the form of a one-time grant, so as to make it more attractive to the private investors. In some other cases, the government may support the project by providing revenue subsidies, including tax breaks or by removing guaranteed annual revenues for a fixed time period.

Between May 5th-6th, 2015 Mr. Masayuki NAOSHIMA, member of Diet and former Minister and Mr. Teruhiko MASHIKO, Former Senior Vice Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry had visited Lao PDR as a part of the mission of the Federation of Multipartisan Diet Members Supporting Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia.

Over the 2 day visit, Mr. NAOSHIMA and Mr. MASHIKO paid a courtesy visit high ranking officials of Laos PDR, including Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Industry and Commerce and Minister of Planning and Investment. Both sides agreed to deepen their cooperation to facilitate the fruitful outcomes of their strategic partnership. They also agreed to work closely on the human resource development and the facilitate the direct flight between Lao PDR and Japan.

Lao side expressed wholehearted thanks to the supports from Japanese people and the Japanese government in various areas which have brought Japanese as the top donor for many years. Lao side also urged for the continuation supports from the Japanese government.

Lao side encouraged more Japanese investment into Lao PDR given the reputation of their high quality investments. Up till now, there are over US$400 million of Japanese investments made in Lao PDR and Japan is ranked as number 7. 

In 2015, Lao PDR and Japan mark the 60th anniversary of the diplomatic relation and also celebrate the 50th anniversary of dispatching the first Japanese volunteer to Lao PDR.

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Last update: 06 February 2020.