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Laos lays out solid steps towards development

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The Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry is developing a long-term business strategy to comply with the government’s policy on SME development. VIENTIANE TIMES

Laos lays out solid steps towards development

THE Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LNCCI) is developing a long-term business strategy based on green and sustainable development to comply with the government’s policy on SME development.

Speaking at the Chamber’s recent annual meeting to review its past achievements, LNCCI President Oudet Souvannavong said the Chamber is determined to encourage the business sector to continue to support the steady growth of the economy through its six key roles.

“We have quite a lot of things to do in the year ahead in collaboration with the public and private sectors as well as international development partners,” Oudet said, noting that the Chamber had not fulfilled several development goals over the past year.

However, it is now prioritising its goals and activities, in particular the strengthening of SMEs, greater production for export and improving the business environment through discussions at the Lao Business Forum and other meetings between the public and private sector.

Also on the agenda is the installation of a business database, integrating the Lao business sector with Asean and improving business promotion and services for LNCCI members.

“At the same time, we will work closely with provincial departments of commerce and industry and Lao business associations to make sure our plan is successfully implemented and creates opportunities for every business member nationwide,” Oudet said.

In a bid to meet planned targets, more business consultations, training for human resource development and business coaching sessions towards achieving international standards are providing useful advice for SMEs and start-up businesses.

Much of this is taking place at the SME Service Centre located at the LNCCI building.

“To more effectively promote business, the LNCCI calls for the government to urgently issue a decree that can be used as a tool to achieve better performance in the near future,” Oudet said.

Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, who was also present at the Chamber’s annual meeting, called for the Chamber to be more active in creating a bridge between the private sector and the government.

“The most important job for the LNCCI is to listen to what its members say about the problems they face. These problems must be submitted to the government for discussion so that solutions can be sought at government meetings,” Thongloun said.

He also advised the business sector to visit communities that produce agricultural goods, handicrafts and other home-made products.

Investors could draw up business contracts with local producers, provide them with funding, and identify domestic and international markets for them.

This would energise local entrepreneurs and give them a chance to shine in the international marketplace, the prime minister added. VIENTIANE TIMES/ASIA NEWS NETWORK

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