Businesses Request Clarification of Government Assistance and Employee Compensation


Businesses have called on the government to provide assistance including tax breaks to ease the burden on the private sector.

The private sector wants to see loan repayment periods extended, tax and tariffs suspended for a six-month period, and has requested microfinance institutions give emergency soft loans to struggling businesses.

The requests come after many businesses have been forced to suspend operations during lockdowns in accordance with an Order issued by the Prime Minister.

Meanwhile, the Lao Ministry of Labor and Social Welfare has requested the government provide specific instructions as to how businesses should compensate employees during the Covid-19 pandemic, Vientiane Times reports.

Deputy Director-General of the Department of Labor Management, Mr. Oudone Maniboune, told the media that businesses who suspended operations in April due to Covid-19 restrictions have been told to pay their employees their ordinary wages.

Businesses that face severe financial difficulties should pay their employees at least half of their usual salaries, while those paid a daily wage should receive at least 50 percent of the amount they typically earn, or at least LAK 550,000 per month.

According to the Vientiane Times, the Lao Federation of Trade Unions and the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare have told businesses in the production and services sectors to respect regulations on the payment of workers affected by the Covid outbreak.

At the same time, employees registered under the Social Insurance Fund who lost their jobs must be paid unemployment benefits.