EU programme supports Laos’ export
Laos and the European Union (EU) on September 9 made a major step forward in bolstering trade and investment with the ARISE Plus-Laos programme with a total budget of 5 million EUR.
The ASEAN Regional Integration Support – Lao People’s Democratic Republic Trade-Related Assistance (ARISE Plus-Laos) programme is designed to enhance Laos’s export competitiveness and integration in export in regional and global value chains.
It will seek to promote trade and tap into the potential of the two chosen sectors of wood processing and specialty agriculture, which enables small and medium-size enterprises in Laos to increase their export knowledge, including on how to trade better and more with partners in the EU.
As the fourth largest trade partner of Laos, the EU voiced its hope that the country will take advantage of its membership of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and reap the benefits of greater access to global markets.
The EU also wants to step up assistance to Laos to strengthen its economic integration into ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations).
The programme was launched during the official visit to Laos of Neven Mimica, European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, and Arancha Gonzalez, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre (ITC), a joint agency of the United Nations and the WTO.
Between 2014 and 2020, the EU provided Laos with 203 million EUR (224.18 million USD) in financial aid and investment, nearly tripling its investment in the previous phase.-VNA