Lao PM touts ‘three opens’ policy to Japanese investors

TOKYO (Vientiane Times/ANN) - Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith introduced Laos’ ‘three opens’ policy on investment to participants at the Mekong-Japan Business Forum in Tokyo, which was organised by the Japan External Trade Organisation. 

The forum was held on the occasion of heads of government from Mekong countries and Japan attending the 10th Mekong-Japan Summit from October 8-9 in Tokyo. 

Speaking at the forum, Prime Minister Thongloun told participants the country was implementing the ‘three opens’ policy, namely open doors, open barriers and open minds, to promote investment opportunities for foreign investors and developers including those from Japan.  

The country is very aware of the contribution from domestic and overseas private sectors to socio-economic development and hopes Japanese investors will consider Laos to expand their businesses in future.     

The Lao government is promoting high-quality investment which wisely employs capital, labour and natural resources. At the same time, the country will continue to improve the investment environment such as enhancing transparency and promoting one-stop services by cutting down administrative procedures to create the best conditions for doing business in Laos.

PM Thongloun also told entrepreneurs that Laos still possess great potential in natural resources, agriculture, particularly green agriculture, and also has multiple tourism sites which highlighted the country’s cultural, historical and natural assets together with environmental protection.

According to a recent report, Japanese companies have invested in more than 101 projects in Laos worth US$158 million, making Japan the 14th largest foreign investor out of 52 nations doing business in the country.

Currently, there are 12 special and specific economic zones. Some 377 domestic and overseas companies have invested in these zones covering an area of 19,612 hectares with a total registered capital of US$8 billion, of which US$1.8 billion has already been spent, according to the report.

The government is committed to attracting more foreign investment to the zones in order to boost economic growth and generate job opportunities for Lao people.