Following the drastic fall of the Lao kip to a record low against foreign currencies in September, Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone has urged immediate action.
On 28–29 September, PM Sonexay called on deputy prime ministers, government members, ministry representatives, provincial leaders, and other relevant parties present at the monthly Cabinet meeting to focus on solving inflation, exchange rates, commodity prices, and foreign debts.
“This includes measures to intervene in the price of essential commodities, especially rice, meat, fish, and eggs, as well as exchange rate management measures, measures to implement credit policy for production, and other measures defined in the order,” said PM Sonexay.
The prime minister urged the attendees of the meeting to continue promoting and monitoring approved projects to ensure their prompt and successful completion, particularly to encourage them to open accounts for payment through the banking system, in order to draw in more foreign currency and generate quick revenue for the state.
He exhorted the concerned parties to expedite a methodical inspection and reevaluation of ongoing projects adding, “any project that is not progressing, progressing slowly, or violating the contract and related laws should be decisively canceled.”
The country leader also advised the appropriate authorities to prioritize the enhancement of revenue collection mechanisms at international checkpoints in order to reach or exceed the state target.
“Efforts to improve management and prevent leakage of state budget revenue must continue in the interim,” stated Sonexay. “The decrees on saving and anti-luxury as well as on state vehicles must be implemented.”
Additionally, PM Sonexay advised the pertinent parties to continue preparing the national socio-economic development plan, state budget plan, and currency strategy for 2024 and to prioritize implementing the remaining three months of the 2023 socio-economic development plan.