- Category: Prime Minister Of Lao P.D.R
- Published on 12 July 2012
Of H.E Thongsing Thammavong, Prime Minister of Lao PDR,
At “Laos Investment Forum”
In Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency
On “July 5, 2012”, Seoul, Korea,
- Excellency Mr. Oh Young Ho, President of Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency.
- Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,
Today, I am extremely delighted, during my official visit to the Republic of Korea, to have an opportunity to visit KOTRA Headquarter and meet all of you including many Korean entrepreneurs, in this very beautiful capital city of Seoul.
I believe that today forum provides a unique opportunity for Lao entrepreneurs to learn lessons and experiences about economic development and business operations from Korea, as a country with few natural resources and yet very rapid growth and great prosperity in all areas. On the other hand, this forum will also present a good opportunity for Korean entrepreneurs to learn more about Lao PDR, including the Lao government investment policy and to meet with the Lao entrepreneurs who are here today in this forum and could become your potential business partners. Therefore, this meeting will further strengthen and elevate the ongoing trade and investment cooperation between our two countries, Lao PDR and the Republic of Korea, to a higher level.
Taking this important and meaningful opportunity, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the President of Korea Trade and Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) and all concerned sectors of the Republic of Korea for all your tireless efforts in promoting trade and investment between our two countries and especially for establishing a representative office of KOTRA in Vientiane Capital City at the end of last year 2011, which reaffirms your strong interests in Laos.
In addition, I would like to express my compliments to all the Korean Investors who have invested in Lao PDR. From the time since our country opened for foreign direct investment up to present, there has been an increased number of Korean investments in Lao PDR with approved investment capital value of 754 million USD in 289 projects. Korea is now ranked number 4 amongst 53 investor countries in Lao PDR. The Korean investments in Lao PDR are in several sectors including mining, hydropower, industry, agriculture, services, hotel & restaurant, banking, and education.
In the 7th five-year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2011-2015), the government of Lao PDR targets high economic growth, in a steady and sustainable manner, with an average annual growth rate of above 8%, by focusing on sustainable development and ensuring a balanced development in terms of economic development, social-cultural development, and environmental protection. This growth will, in turn, help to ensure political stability, peace and social security, which will enable the country to graduate from least developed country status by 2020.
To achieve this ambitious target, the government will look to attract both domestic and foreign private investment in the total value of 1.7 billion USD per year starting from now up to 2015. As such, the government has improved its policies to attract and promote investment through developing and amending related laws to be more consistent and suitable to changing and very dynamic international markets aimed at creating favorable conditions for foreign investors to invest in Lao PDR. The most important thing is to increase investors’ confidence and to create a “leveled playing field” for domestic and foreign investors.
Distinguished guests, Ladies and gentlemen,
Although Lao PDR is a Least and Land-Locked Developed Country, our country, nevertheless, is strategically located right in the center of the Greater Mekong sub-region and presents an excellent opportunity for accessing into the surrounding huge market of the entire Mekong sub-region countries and ASEAN which has a combined population of over 500 million and the People’s Republic of China with population over 1 billion. Moreover, Lao PDR, as a country of rich natural resources, high political stability and public safety, has a great potential for attracting the interest of foreign investors to invest in the country.
Later on, Minister Somdy DOUANDY from Ministry of Planning and Investment of Laos will present to you in greater details.
Again, on behalf of Lao government, I would like to take this opportunity to invite all honored guests, Korea entrepreneurs and Korean citizens to visit and invest in Lao PDR in sectors of your interests.
I wish this forum a great success.