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Lao province raises the bar on economic development

Lao province raises the bar on economic development

Lao's Oudomxay province aims to achieve an annual economic growth rate of 7.7 per cent, building on the growth rate of 6.8 per cent over the first six months of this year, which is higher than the national average.

The target was cited in the province’s development plan, which was introduced to the just ended provincial People’s Council last week.

The Socio-Economic newspaper referred to a report from the province’s Department of Planning and Investment, which stated that Oudomxay achieved a gross domestic product (GDP) of 3.9 trillion kip ($446 million) over the past six months, resulting in average per capita income of $1,394.

While the service sector accounted for the smallest component of GDP at 25.6 per cent, this sector recorded the most growth.

Agriculture and forestry grew at a rate of 4.2 per cent and contributed 39 per cent of GDP, while industry recorded a growth rate of 3.1 per cent and contributed 31.7 per cent of GDP.

Taxes collected from Lao and foreign businesses contributed 3.6 per cent to GDP, with this component registering a growth rate of 3.9 per cent.

Oudomxay produced a rice surplus in the dry season after harvesting 723 tonnes which yielded a surplus of 64 per cent in excess of the target. The amount of rice harvested this year is three times the amount harvested in last year’s dry season.

Other food crop yields amounted to 19,000 tonnes, which accounted for 98 per cent of the target figure over the past half of the year.

The province grew 30,000 tonnes of commercial crops, equalling 83 per cent of the target figure.

Trees were replanted on 30,000ha of land.

The industry and handicrafts sector earned 112 billion kip, while the province’s exports were valued at 36.1 billion kip with imports totalling only 5.1 billion kip.

According to the report delivered at the meeting, Oudomxay will focus on economic development but will also work to improve social development and environmental protection, and alleviate poverty.

By raising economic growth to 7.7 per cent, GDP is on track to be four trillion kip and average per capita income would be $1,501.

To achieve these goals, the service sector will have to grow by 15.2 per cent and contribute 24.3 per cent of GDP, agriculture must grow by 7.3 per cent and account for 42.4 per cent of GDP, while industry must grow by 5.2 per cent and contribute 30.5 per cent of GDP.

Taxes on Lao and foreign businesses and imports must increase by 9.3 per cent and comprise 2.6 per cent of GDP. VIENTIANE TIMES


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