Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals (PEA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in cooperation with the Investment Promotion Department, Ministry of Planning and Investment organized a two-day training on two important tools to support responsible investment in Lao PDR between 30th June and 1st July 2022 in Vientiane Capital.
The training addressed 75 government officials from 18 provinces together with central authorities representing several sectors such as Agriculture, Energy, Mining and others. The participants learned how to conduct effective concession investment via a consolidated monitoring manual and how to use a newly developed investment database. During this interactive training, the participants also shared experiences and inside knowledge regarding investment monitoring at provincial level to further enhance the monitoring tools.
Private investment has contributed immensely to the socio-economic development of the country. The 9th NSEDP acknowledges the importance of enhancing investment promotion to achieve high-quality efficient investments that drive economic growth along with environmental protection to achieve development that is sustainable.
In the training, Ms. Thavichanh Thiengthepvongsa, the Deputy Director General of Investment Promotion Department, Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) highlighted that “Investment approval is just a preliminary step to attract quality and responsible investment; however, the actual outcomes of the investment only show during the project operation. Thus, an efficient systematic investment monitoring is very crucial to ensure quality investment which should run in accordance with set plans, targets, and in compliance with the applicable laws and standards providing, at the same time, necessary support and returns to investors. Only in this proper manner the investment projects can contribute to overall socio-economic development of the country, community development, promoting ‘quality investment’ as aligned to the Government sustainable development and green growth policy.”
Ms. Catherine Phuong, the Deputy Resident Representative of UNDP Lao PDR stressed that “Laos is facing difficulties at the moment with high debt to GDP ratio and inflation rate. In order to recover from this crisis, the government needs to attract more domestic and foreign investment. However, it is important to strike a balance between what we can gain economically and environmental sustainability.”
Since 2018, the Investment Promotion Department and the Poverty-Environment Action for Sustainable Development Goals (PEA) has been developing tools and capacity to promote and manage quality investment in Laos. Besides developing investment monitoring tools, the project has contributed with investment promotion tools, guidelines for Solicited Proposals and PPP investment Model Contract. The project is funded by United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Government of Austria, Belgium, Norway, Sweden and the European Union.
Poverty Environment Actions for Sustainable Development Goals (PEA)
Chindaphone Saignaleuth, Project Coordinator