The Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent global economic downturn have strongly affected the Lao economy in 2020.
Supporting sustainable and inclusive agriculture
Supporting the justice sector
Reconciling tourism development and heritage preservation
A regional presence
Laos has made considerable progress in development over the last two decades, reducing poverty by more than half between 1993 and 2019 while at the same time GDP grew by an average of 7.3% per year, reducing malnutrition and improving education and health outcomes. However, the country is still classified as a Least Developed Country (LDC).
Nevertheless, Lao PDR has assets: important mineral, forestry and hydroelectric resources, low agricultural production but very characteristic agricultural land and a political will to distinguish itself by the quality of its products. In order to further reduce poverty and boost prosperity, the country will need to implement reforms to support greener and more inclusive growth, diversify income sources and encourage private sector participation while managing its vulnerabilities to the effects of climate change.
AFD has been active in the country since 1994. The high level of public debt (70.9% in 2020) limits AFD's intervention to financing in the form of grants exclusively.
AFD's Laos office is directly attached to the Southeast Asia regional office in Bangkok.