63,000 Unemployed in Laos During Covid-19 Pandemic

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Lao government mulls unemployment package
Lao laborers return home to Champasack Province from work in Thailand.

Laos has an estimated 63,000 unemployed, including those already in the country and migrant workers who have returned to Laos due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to a report by the KPL, the unemployment rate in Laos is expected to increase by 20 percent.

Head of the Employment Promotion Department, Department of Skills Education and Employment, Mr. Bounsuan Sayyasith, says the Covid-19 outbreak has heavily impacted the workforce in Laos.

Thousands of migrant workers have returned to Laos, including 147,000 workers from Thailand, and 456 from Malaysia, said Mr. Bounsuan Sayyasith.

He says that there are 115,993 Lao migrant workers stuck in Thailand, 235 in Japan, 320 in South Korea, as well as 1,544 in Malaysia.

“Authorities are attempting to find solution and provide assistance, particularly in coordination with employment centers and the private sector as necessary,” Mr. Bounsuan added.

Some Lao migrant workers have returned home to work at their family rice farms, while others have struggled to find employment sine as early as May last year.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, job opportunities are scarce, with many businesses closing and a reduced workforce.