Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Xekong: A destination for adventurous tourists who love nature

By:  Vientiane Times, December 23, 2017

Xekong jungle camping

XEKONG - Xekong province, located in the heart of southeastern Laos, is not very developed but is a favourite with tourists who enjoy trekking in the deep forest and learning about the lifestyle of ethnic people.

Businesses gain access to job market info via website

By:  Vientiane Times, December 25, 2017

website screenshot

VIENTIANE - Lao businesses will soon be able to access crucial information via a government-owned website that will also provide updates on job opportunities and other useful data regarding the demand and supply of labour.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Land should benefit everyone: Lao PM

By:  Somxay Sengdara, Vientiane Times, December 25, 2017

image hand to the earth

VIENTIANE - Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith has stressed that the government’s policy on land use should add value to land and benefit everyone in the country.

Tourism falls in first 9 months of 2017, Chinese tourists increase

Original Title:  Laos: Tourist arrivals fall by 9 per cent in Jan-Sept
By:  Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, December 20, 2017

image of travel tourism map sunglasses passport

VIENTIANE - The number of foreign tourists visiting Laos in the first nine months of this year dropped by 9.1 per cent to just over 2.88 million people compared to the same period last year.

Monday, December 18, 2017

Corruption causing major loss to Laos

By: Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, December 18, 2017

Examples of Lao money/currency
VIENTIANE - The state lost more than 480 billion kip (US$57.53 million) through corruption over the past five years, and this directly affected national development and poverty reduction efforts in Laos, the State Inspection Authority (SIA) has said. 

Food Market Upclose - Beetles


Friday, December 15, 2017

Kompin ໂຄມປິ່ນ

Watch how kompin ໂຄມປິ່ນ (pronounced kohmbeen) - a Lao version of shadow paper lantern puppetry of sorts - as they're being made.
Video by:  Xeng Yang via Youtube user AtMyLibrary

Lao PM seeks improvements across legal, judicial sectors

By:  Vientiane Times, December 7, 2017

VIENTIANE - Sectors responsible for enforcement, administration, prosecution and adjudication of the law must do all they can to ensure that innocent people are protected and offenders punished, Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith told a meeting in the capital on Tuesday.

Laos Airlines cut ticket prices to stimulate tourism

By:  Vientiane Times, December 7, 2017

VIENTIANE - Lao Airlines, the national flag carrier, is decreasing the price of tickets on domestic and international routes in a bid to stimulate tourism within the country.

The airline’s decision to reduce the price of tickets coincides with the traditional high season for tourists.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Overvalued development projects face scrutiny in Laos

By:  Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, December 12, 2017

financial icons
VIENTIANE - Stronger measures have been put in place to address the problems related to overvalued state investment projects, a senior official has confirmed.

Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment Dr. Kikeo Chanthabouly told Vientiane Times on Friday that the government was announcing measures to enforce laws strictly to ensure the effective expenditure of the State budget.

BCEL launches cashless payment system in Laos

By:  Vientiane Times, December 2, 2017
BCEL logo
VIENTIANE - Banque pour le Commerce Exterieur Lao Public (BCEL) has launched a new service called ‘OnePay’- a mobile phone app that allows users to pay anyone, anywhere, directly from their account by simply photographing a QR code.

8th FMK International Dance Festival

8th FMK International Dance Festival

Sunday, December 10, 2017

A brief look at Lao-South Korean diplomatic relations

A brief look at Lao-South Korean diplomatic relations

The relationship between the two countries has grown considerably in just the last 10 years.  Foreign investment and the number of tourists from South Korea to Laos has skyrocketed.  Here's a brief look at their diplomatic relations.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Vat Haw Pakaew received a new crown

In Vientiane, the famous Vat Haw Pakaew, received a new crown
after its renovations in 2015.
Video Credit: Vientiane Times, May 3, 2015

Heavy debt load in Laos

By:  David Hutt, Asia Times News, November 4, 2017

Twenty years since the 1997 Asian financial crisis, analysts are once again looking skeptically at potentially unsustainable debt piles in the region. Largely untouched by the ’97 collapse, Laos could get pulled into a new era of financial turmoil.


Tuesday, November 28, 2017

A golden crown for the Tat Luang

More than 10 kg of gold leaf placed on the That Luang stupa.
Video Credit: Vientiane Times, October 31, 2016

A taste of North Korean food in Vientiane

Original Title:  Would You Like A Side Of Propaganda? Lunch At A North Korean Restaurant
By:  Elise Hu, NPR News, September 5, 2016
With contributions from:  Xaisongkham Induangchanthy

North Korean restaurant in Laos
North Korean restaurants, like this one in Vientiane, Laos, 
don't just serve North Korean cuisine.  They are run by the North Korean 
government as a way to earn hard currency to send back to an increasingly 
sanctioned Pyongyang.  Photo Credit: Elise Hu/NPR

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

A lot more available than you might have thought

Lots of different Beer Lao products
Showcase of all the Beer Lao products, taken by Jesse for his blog, 
after he visited the Beer Lao headquarters.  
Photo Credit:  JesseLaos, 2016.  Edited by: Laoconnection.com

A sight to behold along the river in Thakek

Nak Statue in Thakek, Khammouane
Nak statue in Thakek, Khammouane
Photo Credit: ຄຳມ່ວນແດນງາມ via Facebook
Edited by: Laoconnection.com

Monday, November 20, 2017

Minimum investment requirement eliminated on general businesses

Minimum investment requirement eliminated on general businesses by foreign investors to Laos
In April 2016, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) advised the Lao government to reduce or eliminate the minimum investment capital of 1 billion kip on foreign owned businesses in what it described as discriminatory and a deterrent for investors, as well as, not serving its original purpose.  A formal recommendation to amend the Law on Investment to rescind the minimum was then submitted to the National Assembly that same year.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Lao-American woman in hospital after recent California shooting

Tiffany Phommathep and her family - victim of California mass shooting
Photo Credits:  Phommathep Family

Very sad news coming from Rancho Tehama, California regarding a recent mass shooting. One of the those shot was Tiffany Phommathep who was shot several times while trying to protect the children in her vehicle, 3 of whom were own children.  Even the children sustained injuries and bullet wounds.  

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Chinese President Xi meets with former Lao classmates

Chinese President Xi meets with old classmates in Vientiane during the second day of his two day visit to Laos.  His old classmates included Lao nationals, such as former Lao Foreign Minister Pholsena, who had sought asylum during the 1960s in China.
Video Credit:  CGTN via Youtube, November 14, 2017

Chinese President Xi Jinping lands in Laos for state visit

By:  EChinaNews (ECNS.CN), November 14, 2017

Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, arrived in Laos Monday for a state visit as the two socialist countries seek to consolidate their traditional friendship.

It marks the first visit in 11 years by a Chinese head of state and top CPC leader to this neighboring country in Southeast Asia.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Lao culture epitomized in a dress costume

Miss Phounesup Phonnyotha, Miss International 2017 contestant representing Laos.
Photo Credit: Fluke Photography and Than Mak Wedding Studio, via Vientiane Times.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Monday, November 6, 2017

“Laos Simply Beautiful” showcased at Asia’s biggest travel fair

By:  Vientiane Times, October 30, 2017

Laos Simply Beautiful logo

VIENTIANE - A private and public effort under the leadership of the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism successfully showcased the strengths of Laos’ tourism potential at this year’s ITB Asia in Singapore.

South Korean visitors to Laos double over 3 years

By:  Vientiane Times, November 3, 2017

VIENTIANE - The number of South Korean tourists visiting Laos has doubled in the three years from 2014-16, according to report by the Tourism Development Department of Laos’ Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.

Law Amendments Allow Government to Grant Citizenship

By:  KPL News, November 2, 2017

The National Assembly (NA) approved on Nov 1 at the ongoing 4th Ordinary Session of the National Assembly’s 8th legislature amendments to the Law on Lao Nationality that authorises the government to grant Lao nationality to foreigners.

Primer on Understanding That Luang Festival

Video Credit:  Lotus CommNet

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Govt vows to retrieve billions lost to misuse, illegal imports

By: Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, November 6, 2017

The government has entrusted authorities in charge to carry out inspections into 45.53 million litres of oil that was imported for a state investment project but was never actually used for that project.

The move is part of measures adopted by the ongoing 4th ordinary session of the National Assembly’s 8th Legislature.

Volunteer teachers issue solutions sought

By:  Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, October 23, 2017

The Ministry of Education and Sports has committed to taking recommendations proposed by National Assembly members into account to better address chronic issues surrounding the nation’s volunteer teachers.

2nd Lao Coffee Festival Set for December

Original Title:  Laos: Coffee festival to put local industry on the boil
By:  Vientiane Times, October 30, 2017

2nd Lao Coffee Festival - Press Conference
Photo Credit:  Vientiane Times, October 30, 2017

VIENTIANE - The Lao Coffee Association (LCA) is hosting the second Lao Coffee Festival in Vientiane from December 10-12, aiming to expand domestic and export sales.

1st Laos Chess International Open

By:  Edwin Lam, Chess Base News, October 27, 2017

Chess being played in Lao schools.  Photo Credit:  Lao Chess Federation.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Phouvong Jewelry Calendar 2017 - November and December

Phouvong Jewelry Calendar 2017 - October and December
ບະຕິທິນຮ້ານຄໍາພູວົງ 2017 ເດືອນພະຈິກແລະເດືອນທັນວາ

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Laos aims to attract 5.2 mln foreign tourists in 2018

Source:  Xinhua News, October 24, 2017

VIENTIANE - The Lao government has set a plan to attract more than 5.2 million foreign arrivals to the country and increase the annual income generated by the foreign visitors to 900 million U.S. dollars in 2018.

Laos sets to promote tourism, preserve unique, fine traditional culture

Source:  Xinhua News, October 28, 2017

Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith launches the "Visit Laos Year 2018"
Lao Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith launches the "Visit Laos Year 2018" at the opening of the annual That Luang Festival in Vientiane, Laos, Oct. 28, 2017. Laos officially launched the "Visit Laos Year 2018" on Saturday, aiming to promote tourism and preserve unique and fine traditional culture of Laos. (Photo Credit:  Xinhua/Liu Ailun)


Friday, October 27, 2017

Embodied Nation - Sport, Masculinity, and the Making of Modern Laos

Title:  Embodied Nation - Sport, Masculinity, and the Making of Modern Laos
By:  Simon Creak
Publisher, Year:  University of Hawaii, 2015
ISBN:   9780824838890
Price:  USD$30

Embodied Nation - Sport, Masculinity, and the Making of Modern Laos

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Lao prime minister pushing to ease business barriers

By:  Vientiane Times, October 25, 2017

VIENTIANE - Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith told the National Assembly (NA) on Monday the government will take serious action against red tape hampering exports and lessen unnecessary barriers for business.

The PM made the comment responding to questions raised by members of the parliament at the ongoing 4th ordinary session of the NA’s 8th legislature in Vientiane.

Timelapsed Mekong River

A very cool timelapse video of the Mekong River from different cities/towns in Laos and from different perspectives.

Video Credit:  Tobias Doblinger via Youtube, February 11, 2016

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Repeat Offender: Vietnam’s persistent trade in illegal timber

Title:  Repeat Offender: Vietnam’s persistent trade in illegal timber
By:  Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA)
Publisher, Year:  EIA, 2017
ISBN:  N/A
Cost:  Free

Repeat Offender: Vietnam’s persistent trade in illegal timber

"As Laos has tightened controls over illicit timber flows, Vietnamese traders, abetted by Government policies and support, have increasingly switched their attention to Cambodia as a source of cheap illegal raw materials." - EIA

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Elaborate Costume

Video Credit:  Miss Grand International
and Youtube user Ahacrh, October 12, 2017

Laos: Trillion kip spent unlawfully, says the top auditor

By:  Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, October 19, 2017

VIENTIANE - More than one trillion kip of state spending without approval from the National Assembly (NA) has been uncovered, the state top auditor told the parliament this week.

More than one trillion kip of state spending without approval from the National Assembly (NA) has been uncovered, the state top auditor told the parliament this week.

Friday, October 13, 2017

The Ivory Trade of Laos: Now the Fastest Growing in the World

Title:  The Ivory Trade of Laos:  Now the Fastest Growing in the World
By:  Lucy Vigne and Esmond Martin, Save the Elephants
Publisher, Year:  Save the Elephants, 2017
ISBN:  9789966107831
Cost:  Free


Background:

It has been reported in recent weeks that Laos has become the fastest growing market for the illegal ivory trade.  This comes on the heels of Thailand and China's ban on ivory causing the market to have unfortunately moved to Laos where Chinese and Vietnamese demand continues. This is the investigative report that has shed a very informative light on the issue and to which news outlets have picked up on.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Laos: Oudomxay legalises foreign workers

By:  Vientiane Times, October 12, 2017

VIENTIANE - Oudomxay provincial authorities are registering foreigners and issuing them with temporary work permits in a bid to regulate the increasing number of undocumented migrant workers in the province.

Lao government clamps down on foreigners’ illegal business activities

By:  Vientiane Times, October 9, 2017

ATTAPEU, Laos - Attapeu province has taken steps to tackle the problems surrounding alien workers and foreigners who run businesses illegally and flout the regulations concerning land use rights.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Almost 10,000 Lao Students Studying in China

Article Title:  China welcomes more overseas students
By:  Khonesavanh Latsaphao, Vientiane Times, October 10, 2017

Almost 10,000 Lao Students Studying in China
Photo Credit:  Vientiane Times, October 10, 2017

BEIJING - More and more foreign students from South Asia and Southeast Asia are coming to study in China, including from Laos, which last year had almost 10,000 people studying in the country.

New Art Exhibition - Charming Laos

New Art Exhibition - Charming Laos

Monday, October 9, 2017

The Lao Trade Story

Title:  The Lao Trade Story - Implementing Trade Policy and Trade Facilitation Reforms in Lao PDR
By:  World Bank
Publisher/Year:  World Bank, 2016
ISBN:  N/A
Cost:  Free

The Lao Trade Story - Implementing Trade Policy and Trade Facilitation Reforms in Lao PDR

Perhaps a Lesson for Laos?

Article Title:  War of the Dragons: Why North Korea Does Not Trust China
The legacy of the Sino-Vietnamese War continues to cast a shadow on China-North Korea relations.
By:  Franz-Stefan Gady, The Diplomat, September 29, 2017
   
The idea that China holds the key to solving the ongoing political and military crisis on the Korean Peninsula has been the standard jack-in-the-box of U.S. North Korea policy for the past seven decades, set to pop up whenever U.S.-North Korea tensions escalated and the threat of war thought imminent.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Private Investment Over 2 Years at USD$7.5B in Laos

By:  KPL News, September 24, 2017

Minister of Planning and Investment Souphan Keomixay told a government meeting on the promotion of private investment on Friday that over the past two years 120 private investment projects have been recorded with a combined capital of 7.5 billion US dollars.

Will Laos Buy New Weapons from Indonesia?

Jakarta continues to look for regional opportunities for its state-owned defense companies.
By:  Prashanth Parameswaran, The Diplomat, September 26, 2017

On September 24, reports surfaced that one of Indonesia’s state-owned defense companies had received interest from Laos for some new arms sales. The reports are part of a broader development where Jakarta is seeking to strengthen its defense industry, including through selling more products to regional countries like Laos with which it is commemorating 60 years of relations this year.

Fiercely paddling right to the finish line

Boat Racing Festival.  Video Credit:  Vientiane Times, October 6, 2017


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

If you're in Laos this week, two colourful festivals await

By:  Visith Teppalath, Vientiane Times, October 4, 2017

Boat Racing Festival in Vientiane
Photo Credit:  Phoonsab

Anyone visiting Laos this week is urged not to miss the Vientiane Boat Racing Festival and the traditional and religious activities nationwide that mark the end of Buddhist Lent.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

Lao Mushroom Sauce

A simple and delicious mushroom jaew (sauce).  ແຈ່ວເຫັດນາງຟ້າ
Video Credit:  May Laos Kitchen via Youtube, September 18, 2017.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

The 4th Population and Housing Census 2015 - Full Report

Title, Lao:  ຜົນການສຳຫຼວດພົນລະເມືອງ ແລະ ທີ່ຢູ່ອາໄສ ທົ່ວປະເທດ ຄັ້ງທີ IV ປີ2015
Title, English:  Results of Population and Housing Census 2015
By:   Lao Statistics Bureau
Publisher, Year:  UNFPA, 2016
ISBN:  n/a
Cost:  Free

Results of Population and Housing Census 2015 (in Lao)Results of Population and Housing Census 2015 (in English)


Is it Lao or English?

Laoconnection.com country image with Lao/Eng text
ແມ່ນພາສາລາວຫຼືອັງກິດ