Poverty eradication is a government priority, particularly in the mountainous areas of northern Laos, which are among the poorest in the country and whose income is almost exclusively based on agricultural activity. Ten districts are targeted in the three mountainous provinces of Luang Prabang (Phongxay, Pakseng, Viengkham), Houaphan (Houamouang, Viengxay, Hiem, Xone) and Phongsaly (May, Samphanh, Khoua), while 14,000 families living in 250 villages will benefit from the programme. The latter will also contribute to strengthening the government's capacity to pilot this type of activity.
The Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness was translated into the Vientiane Declaration (2006). The Northern Uplands Development Programme (NUDP) becomes the first attempt to approach the rural sector in Laos.
The programme aimed to contribute to poverty reduction and sustainable development in the three mountain provinces by improving agricultural production.
The NUDP is divided into six components: land and territory management, local governance and village planning, promoting the economic development of poor areas, supporting the emergence of peasant organizations, strengthening the provision of agricultural services by the public sector and action for food security. The NUDP was financed by AFD in a concerted framework with the European Union and Swiss and German cooperation. This system is replicated at the provincial level.
- Economic effects: improvement of farmers' income and access to credit.
- Institutional effects: strengthening dialogue between stakeholders, partners and the Lao State.
- Social effects: strengthening the capacities of villagers, who define the use of their land and the modalities of their development through support for the formation of producer organizations.
- Environmental effects: better management of natural resources.