Economic Recovery Tops National Assembly Agenda

National Assembly 8th Legislature opens 10th ordinary session (Photo: Vientiane Times)

The National Assembly eighth legislature opened its three-week 10th ordinary session in Vientiane on Tuesday with economic recovery as the main focus of the agenda.

In her opening remarks, National Assembly (NA) President Pany Yathotou said the session would consider and approve reports on the implementation of this year’s socio-economic development plan, budget and currency plans, and plans for 2021.

President Bounnhang Vorachit, Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, and other cabinet members attended the opening session.

The NA members are expected to focus their debates on measures to revive the economy next year amid the uncertainty of the Covid-19 pandemic, financial difficulties, and impact from natural disasters, Xinhua reported on Tuesday.

The year 2021 will see the start of Laos’ ninth five-year national socio-economic development plan (2021-2025). The biannual session of the NA will discuss a draft of the ninth five-year plan before submitting a final draft for further debate and approval by the NA’s next legislature.

Meanwhile, a general election of members of the ninth legislature is expected to take place early next year.

The session – the last of the NA’s 8th legislature – will also consider and approve urban planning for Vientiane, reports made by the State Audit Organisation on the results of the audit of the state budget for 2020, audit plan for 2021, and an audit summary report for 2019.

Lawmakers are scheduled to debate and approve five laws, comprising four newly-drafted laws and the drafted amendments of a law. The laws concern diplomatic rankings, youth, international cooperation in the fields of crime and higher education, and amendments on state auditing law.

Assembly members will also be briefed on the implementation of laws and regulations concerning the management of entertainment.

The Government Inspection Authority is scheduled to report the findings of its inspections of audited reports for 2018, 2013-2014, and 2015-2016 fiscal years for the session to consider and approve.The People’s Supreme Prosecutor and People’s Supreme Court will report on their performances for 2020 and submit plans for 2021 for the Assembly to consider and endorse, Mrs. Pany said.

The Lao Front for National Development will comment on the performance of the NA, which is Laos’ top legislative body, and represents the interests of the multiethnic Lao people.