Lao Government Increases Living Allowances for Civil Servants

Candidates attend civil servant examination.

The Prime Minister’s Office has recently announced the increase in living allowances for civil servants across the country.

A notice issued by the office states that the National Assembly has subsidized the cost of living for civil servants and retired senior employees by LAK 150,000 per person per month in 2023.

Minister of Finance, Mr. Bounchom Ubonpaseuth said at the National Assembly Session in December last year that the ministry has allocated over LAK 1.7 billion to improve the cost of living for civil servants.

The minister stated that the update on the salaries of civil servants would not be made public as an increase in the price of goods following the announcement could affect the overall cost of living for residents.

National Assembly Representative for Vientiane Capital Ms. Valy Vetsaphong, said during the recent National Assembly Session in December that late payment of civil servant salaries is unacceptable. Her speech came after some government employees had to wait up to three months to be paid.

The lack of access to bank payments via ATM resulted in delayed payments to civil servants, particularly those who work in rural areas, said the Minister of Finance.

“I have already received my December payment, which increased by LAK 20,000 from my base salary of LAK 1,399,000 to a total of LAK 1,419,000,” a police officer at the Police Department in the capital city of Vientiane told the Laotian Times via voice message.

The government has decided to hire only 800 new civil servants this year, which is a reduction of 500 positions from the previous year. The new recruitment plan would focus more on hiring contract staff and volunteers who have worked for state departments for several years, particularly those engaged with rural communities like teachers and medical staff.