The Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry has proposed a number of strategies for stabilizing the currency and ending the ongoing fuel crisis in Laos.
The continued devaluation of the kip against the Thai baht and the US dollar means that importers must pay more to purchase the foreign currency required to import commodities, including fuels.
Vice President of the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LNCCI), Mr. Daovone Phachanthavong, told the Vientiane Times in an interview that the weak value of the Lao kip was having a huge impact on the price of fuel in Laos.
He said that reopening the country to foreign tourists was a good move that would help the government collect foreign currency, saying that the tourism sector must strive to better facilitate tourists once they arrive.
Mr. Daovone suggested that the Government of Laos should send more Lao laborers overseas under agreements with foreign countries, which would assist in reducing unemployment while bringing foreign currency back into the country.
He also said that the business environment needed vast but quick improvement in order to attract more foreign investment into Laos.
“We have suggested that foreign investors be given multi-entry visas for a five-year period, as an incentive to explore investment opportunities in Laos,” Mr. Daovone was quoted as saying.
He also said that Laos must do more to promote intensive agricultural production for export, making use of the Laos-China Railway to easily transport produce.
As a final suggestion, Mr. Daovone argued that foreigners of Lao descent should be allowed to legally own land in Laos, which would bring more foreign currency into the country.
The Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LNCCI) was established in 1989 as an independent body that represents the business community in Laos.