Agriculture, heritage and tax policy in Laos: AFD Group, MPI launch three projects

17/06/2024 17:19
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KPL (KPL)On June 13, an official launch of additional funds totalling 13,6M€ for three projects was held at the MPI and chaired by Ms Phonevanh Outhavong, Deputy Minister of the MPI, Madam Siv-Leng CHHUOR, French Ambassador to Lao PDR, and Mr Jean-Pierre MARCELLI, Regional Director for AFD in South-East Asia with participation of representatives of concerned ministries and French and other cooperation actors.

(KPL) On Jun 13, an official launch of additional funds totalling 13.6 m euros for three projects was held in Vientiane and chaired by Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Phonevanh Outhavong, French Ambassador to the Lao PDR Siv-Leng Chhuor, and Regional Director for AFD in South-East Asia Jean-Pierre Marcelli with participation of representatives of concerned ministries and French and other cooperation actors.

Among the 13.6M€, 5M€ will be provided for the preservation of heritage and the strengthening of the territorial attractiveness of the Vat Phu Champassak World heritage site and the old town of Savannakhet, in order to promote tourism and improve the living conditions of local residents.

8M€ in European Union (EU) co-financing of existing AFD projects will be used to enhance and promote the quality development of coffee and tea sectors through agro-ecological community-based action, climate-resilient and inclusive value chains with a gender and human rights-based approach in the Northern provinces of Laos.

600,000€ will be used to provide technical assistance by Expertise France to support the rationalization of tax expenditures related to concession agreements in the Lao PDR, which will be aiming providing analytical tools to examine potential new concession agreements of local and foreign direct investments project in Laos and help set up an appropriate coordination mechanism between all concerned authorities, whose outcomes shall provide more internal and sustainable resources for the Lao Government to implement the prioritized activities and measures planned under the National Socio-Economic Development plans of the Lao PDR. 

This launch ceremony took place while the Regional Director of the French Development Agency (AFD) to South-East Asia, Mr Jean-Pierre Marceelli, conducts a two-day mission to Vientiane on Jun 13-14, in order to meet with several ministries and stakeholders to discuss about the challenges, prioritized areas and sectors of cooperation to support development activities in the Lao PDR.

During this mission, the AFD Regional Director has planned courtesy calls to high-ranking authorities of several ministries and key development partners such as the Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI), the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Energy and Mines, the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry as well as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank.

Furthermore, the organisation of this official launch is part of the celebration of the 30th anniversary of AFD’s presence in the Lao PDR, which gives way to a ceremony to be held at the end of the year 2024.

“It is a great pleasure for me to witness the launch of these three new projects supported by and through AFD Group. France, as a long and lasting partner of the Lao PDR, remains committed to further strengthen cooperation through various French cooperation actors. The sizeable amount of additional funds approved by AFD and by the EU through AFD to enhance quality development in the coffee and tea sectors, preserve cultural heritage and support sustainable domestic revenues illustrates this commitment,” said French Ambassador Siv-Leng Chhuor.