Authorities in Laos have said that a weakened Lao Kip is to blame for the increase in egg prices.
According to a report by KPL, the cost of living in Laos has risen due to a weakening local currency (LAK), causing many food products to increase in price, including eggs, which used to be a reliably cheap item.
Deputy Director of the Vientiane Industry and Commerce Department, Mr. Nanta Sanouvong, says the price of eggs sold at farms in Vientiane Capital has risen to over LAK 30,000 for one package of 30 eggs, up from around LAK 2,000 in prior months.
Farmers blame a strong Thai Baht (THB) for the rise in egg prices, saying egg-laying hens and their feed are imported from Thailand, while customer demand grows and egg output is restricted due to hot weather.
However, the Thai baht has in actual fact become the hardest hit currency in the region, plunging more than ten percent against the dollar. But with Laos relying on imports from Thailand, a weakened kip makes the baht appear strong.
“Vientiane Capital now has 198 egg farms that produce over 600,000 eggs per day, almost all of which are owned by Lao entrepreneurs, with the exception of CP Sole Co., Ltd which is controlled by a foreign investor,” said Mr. Nanta Sanouvong.
Residents in Vientiane Capital say the price of fresh food has increased alarmingly, particularly eggs, and have urged the government to address the rising cost of living.
“Authorities are currently discussing a solution to the situation, and we anticipate that the price of eggs in the markets will return to normal by the end of September or within the next few months,” Mr. Nanta Sanouvong added.
Eggs are not currently among the list of controlled products in Laos, which includes fuels, rice, beef and pork, fish, gas, cement, steel bars, and poultry, among others.