Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Mr. Kikeo Chanthaboury and Australian Ambassador to Lao PDR Mr. John Williams launched a new partnership to monitor public investment yesterday, October 11.
Delivered through the Planning and Investment Department of International Cooperation and the Laos Australia Development Learning Facility, the partnership will develop and use a new public investment monitoring system. It is planned to continue through June 2020.
Deputy Minister Kikeo said, “Official Development Assistance (ODA) makes an essential contribution to the development of the Lao PDR. To track our performance during the implementation of the 8th National Socio-Economic Development Plan (NSEDP) we need quality and timely public investment monitoring information. This partnership with Australia will start with development of a better monitoring system for ODA in Laos. The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) will use this system with is development partners to ensure that ODA is used effectively, achieves its goals, and is sustainable in Laos.”
Ambassador Williams reflected on Australia’s long-term partnership with Laos and the productive relationship with MPI. “Knowing where ODA is being used, how it is being used, and who is using it helps the government of Laos manage investments to deliver sustainable development.”
Bilateral cooperation contributes more than 60% of total development cooperation – amounting to US$887 million in the period 2011-2015. Around 25% of total government revenue was sourced from grants during this period. In the period 2016-2020, the government plans to invest US$29 billion in the development fund, sourced from: Public investment – comprised of the government budget (9-11%) and ODA (15-17%); Foreign direct and other private sector investment – 55-57%; and Bank credit – 17-19%.
Development of the public investment monitoring system has three targets for 2016/17: (1) an ODA monitoring system; (2) new or revised regulations; and (3) capacity building to strengthen MPI practices. The work will start with the MPI and include input from other government agencies (including MoFA, MoF and MoHA at central level); line ministries such as MoES, MoAF, MoPWT and MoH. Three selected provinces will participate in the pilot use of the monitoring forms and tools.
Following successful application of the system for ODA, it will be extended to other public investments of the government budget.