(KPL) The government is accelerating its preparation of key documents necessary to secure World Heritage Status for the Plain of Jars in Xieng Khuang and the Hin Nam No Protected Area in Khammuan Province.
The Plain of Jars, mostly known in Lao as Thong Hai Hin, are the prehistoric stone megaliths which attract thousands of tourists to Xieng Khuang each year.
Hin Nam No is a national protected area comprising scenic landscapes, rugged karst mountains, and highly bio-diverse flora and fauna.
Currently there are two World Heritage sites in Laos including the town of Luang Prabang listed by UNESCO in 1995 and Vat Phou and associated ancient settlements within the Champassak cultural landscape. It was nominated by UNESCO in 2001.
Tourism is one of the key foreign currency earners for the Lao PDR. Over the past five years, the number of foreign visitors to Laos has increased annually by 10-14 % with the number of visitors reaching 4.6 million in 2015 and over 5 million last year.