Monday, March 26, 2018

Mister Laos 2017

You've probably heard of the Miss Laos competition but did you know there's also a men's version?

Mister Laos 2017.  Video Credit:  Noy VX, November 29, 2017, via Youtube.

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Want to learn English or Lao?

​ຢາກຮຽນພາສາອັງກິດຫຼືພາສາລາວ​ບໍ Here are some videos that might help you.

ການອອກສຽງ - Th,Ch,Sh.
Video Credit:  DICLaos, August 12, 2013, via Youtube

Friday, March 23, 2018

Russian diplomat translates perfect Lao

News clips of foreign diplomats occasionally speaking Lao at news conferences and during interviews can be seen across the internet.  But this clip takes the cake in an impressive display of Russian-to-Lao translation.

Video Credit:  Vientiane Times, September 8, 2015, via Youtube.

Young Russians singing a Lao song

Found this video recently, though it's from 2014.  Have you ever seen such a thing? Russian teenagers, while visiting Laos on a cultural exchange program, perform for the audience singing a Lao song with some dancing.  Quite impressive!

 Video Credit: MrBounthanom, October 28, 2014, via Youtube.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Can't get enough of the Tat Luang?

Beautiful aerial footage of the iconic Tat Luang during the day, sunset and at night.
Credit:  DBS Production, February 11, 2018

Lao expatriates pledge support for development efforts

By:  Somxay Sengdara, Vientiane Times, March 19, 2018

Ethnic Lao who now live overseas have pledged to do more to unify Lao communities in their countries, as well as preserving their original national identity and supporting the government’s policy of people-based diplomacy.

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Chinese bank, already largest foreign bank in Laos, aims do to more

Original Title:  ICBC Vientiane eyes to become leading bank in Laos
By:  Xinhua News, March 16, 2018

VIENTIANE - Established in 2011, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) Vientiane Branch aims to become a leading commercial bank in Laos and offer the best banking services in the country in the coming years.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Explore Food Markets of Laos

This is such a wonderful new food market channel on Youtube that's called simply "Amazing Food". He's been posting videos of different food markets across Laos (and some from Thailand). Here are couple of videos here.

In Pakse.  Credit:  Amazing Food

Monday, March 12, 2018

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Laos closes wood processing plants to comply with PM’s Order

By:  Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, March 5, 2018

VIENTIANE - Some 349 wood processing plants and over 1,000 family-based furniture workshops have been shut down since the Prime Minister’s Order No. 15 was issued in 2016.

These drastic measures are intended to reform regulation of the timber industry and ensure that only finished wood products are exported.

Foreign currency deposits soar as people lose confidence in kip

By:  Ekaphone Phouthonesy, Vientiane Times, March 1, 2018

VIENTIANE - A large number of businesspeople and members of the public still deposit money in foreign currencies despite increased efforts by the Bank of the Lao PDR to promote the usage of the national currency, according to data from the central bank.

Image of Lao money, the kip

As part of its efforts to promote usage of the kip, the central bank has joined forces with the commerce sector to urge vendors in major towns to display prices in kip.

Tuesday, March 6, 2018

Lao Language: Other ways to say "how are you?"

When conversing in Lao there are a few different ways to say "how are you?".  However, each way of saying it has a subtle difference in meaning.  Learn them here...

Lao Language:  Other ways to say "how are you?"

Analysts warn economic losses from road accidents are immense

By:  Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, March 1, 2018

VIENTIANE - While road accidents have become the main cause of fatalities in Laos, the economic losses resulting from these tragedies are massive, analysts say.

Every day at least three people are killed in road accidents, mostly because of speeding, drunk driving or similar irresponsible behaviour.

Lao govt advertises 27 potential investment projects

By:  Ekaphone Phouthonesy, Vientiane Times, March 5, 2018

VIENTIANE - The government has compiled a list of potential development projects in which investment by the private sector is needed.

The list can be found on the Ministry of Planning and Investment’s website.

Bike for Her 2018

What a great success to a wonderful event! The Bike for Her 2018 completed on March 3 2018 in Vientiane. An event to help raise funds to stop violence against women and towards the Counselling and Protection Centre for Women and Children. Have a look!

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Swift action to fill national coffers called for as Cabinet meets

By:  Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, February 22, 2018

A meeting of the government’s executive cabinet has endorsed a call for swift and immediate action to speed up the employing of modern technologies and equipment for revenue collection in an attempt to close loopholes and revenue leaks and maximise revenue collection.

Friday, March 2, 2018

Laos: Temporary Suspension of Business Licenses in Certain Industries

By:  Dino Santaniello, Tilleke & Gibbins law firm, via, February 14, 2018

Laos has attracted substantial foreign investment in recent years, which has contributed to a surge in the establishment of legal entities, both local and foreign. However, the Lao government has noted that a number of legal entities have not actually been operating business activities in the country, nor have they fulfilled minimum requirements set out in relevant regulations. Moreover, the government found that several concessions that were granted are still not operational, or have been used as collateral or bargaining assets that were later sold to other investors for projects that were not originally part of the concessions granted.

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Hotline helps government administration

By:  Somxay Sengdara, Vientiane Times, February 23, 2018

Hotline calls have helped the government gain a better understanding of public concerns allowing it to address their problems in accordance with the facts.

Monday, February 26, 2018

Over 3,000 to run Vientiane Half Marathon in Laos

By:  Xinhua News, February 23, 2018

VIENTIANE, Feb. 23 (Xinhua) -- More than 3,000 amateur and professional runners are expected to line up for the third Vientiane International Half Marathon on March 4, local daily the Vientiane Times reported on Friday.

The 3rd Vientiane International Half Marathon coming up March 4

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Laos sees marked shift in tourist appeal

By:  Nikkei Asian Review, February 18, 2018

Patuxai in Vientiane
Tourists in front of the Patuxai in Vientiane.  Photo Credit:  Laure Siegel

...In 2017, total arrivals declined by an annual 10%, for the second consecutive year. Back in 2015 Laos tourism reached an all-time high, with 4.68 million international arrivals.

Why Laos’ reliance on Chinese money could bankrupt the country

By:, February 22, 2018

Image of Lao money/currency
Photo Credit:  Christian Haugen/CC by 2.0

World Bank economists assessed that China accounted for 35% of Laos’ public debt in 2012. They claimed this figure rose to around 44% by 2015. Public debt is now at an estimated 68% of gross domestic product (GDP). Around half of the borrowed money is from China.

Study abroad attractive as degree candidates cross borders

By:  Vientiane Times, February 19, 2018

The number of Lao students and officials studying outside the country is on the rise.

In 2017, more than 6,100 students studied in foreign countries.  Some 1,023 people received government scholarships, 2,181 people received exchange scholarships, and 1,891 people financed their own tuition.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Lao musical instrument Khaen declared humanity’s heritage

By:  Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, February 20, 2018

VIENTIANE - The music of the Khaen, a Lao instrument, has been declared Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity by United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

Lao musical instrument Khaen declared humanity’s heritage

Boun Khaochi proves a traditional festival worthy of preservation

By:  Visith Teppalath, Vientiane Times, February 20, 2018

Boun Khaochi proves a traditional festival worthy of preservation

VIENTIANE - Boun Khaochi or Khaochi festival has echoed the lifestyle of the Lao people since ancient times and it is a fine tradition that has been passed on from generation to generation as it deserves to be preserved.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Tai New Year in Namaw, Oudomxay

If you're planning to travel to the northern parts of Laos, consider checking out this event in Namaw, Oudomxay, February 23-25, 2018.   It's the New Year celebrations of the Tai ethnic minority group. 12 ethnic groups in all will be attending and joining in the festivities and celebrations. One of the featured food items will be the edible bamboo.

ງານບຸນກິນຈຽງເຜົ່າໄຕ ມືອງນາໝໍ້ ແຂວງອຸດົມໄຊ ວັນທີ 23-25 ກຸມພາ 2018

The guys compete too!

Lithideth Sorphabmixay
Lithideth Sorphabmixay.  Photo Credit:  Prince of Naka

Sunday, February 18, 2018

Longsy Sinakhone represents Laos at the Miss International Queen 2018

This year Lao contestant Longsy Sinakhone, who also goes by the name Jenly, will be in the Miss International Queen 2018 pageant.

It is the world's largest and well-respected beauty pageant for international transvestites and transgender individuals. Click below to learn more and to vote.

Elephant Festival 2018

This event is going on right now in Xayaboury. A mix of fun, revelry, and elephants.  Have a look at some of the pictures from the Grand Opening.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Lao Hip Hop Festival 2018

Lao Hip Hop Festival 2018

Vientiane Performing Arts Festival 2018

Vientiane Performing Arts Festival 2018

Laos has the youngest average population in Asia

Original Title:  How Asia’s Population is Ageing, 2015-2030 Scenario
By:  DataLEADS, February 15, 2018

NEW DELHI - The proportion of people aged 60 and over is projected to grow in all Asian countries with Japan and South Korea aging faster than their neighbours. Laos will remain the youngest nation in Asia.
Laos has the youngest average population in Asia

Practical Law Global Guide 2018: Doing Business In Laos

By:  Dino Santaniello and Saithong Rattana, of Tilleke & Gibbons law firm
For:  Thomson Reuters Practical Law and LexMundi
Posted:  February 14, 2018

Practical Law Global Guide 2018: Doing Business In Laos

The Laos chapter of Global Guide 2018: Doing Business In..., a guide published by Practical Law in association with Lex Mundi, presents a comprehensive Q&A-style overview of doing business in Laos.

Lao Telecom Rakes in LAK 1.84 Trillion

By:  KPL News, February 15, 2018

Lao Telecom logo

Last year, Lao Telecom (LTC) raked in a pretax income of LAK1.84 trillion, increased by 1.8% from 2016.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Schools Closed due to Severe Cold Weather in Huaphan

By:  Phewphone Sonvilay, KPL News, February 2, 2018

Samneua, Huaphan, Laos

(KPL) Schools in the northern province of Huaphan were closed between Feb 5 and 9 as temperature decreased to as low as 3 degree Celsius.

Lao Factory Owners Say Proposed Wage Hike Will Shutter Businesses

By:  RFA's Lao Service, February 9, 2018
Translated by Bounchanh Mouangkham. Written in English by Joshua Lipes.

A worker on duty at the state-owned Lao Brewery bottling plant.
A worker on duty at the state-owned Lao Brewery bottling plant.
Source: AP Photo

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Geography Now! presents a brief overview of Laos

Ken and the team at Geography Now! share a brief overview of Laos.
Video Credit:  Geography Now! via Youtube

Kapok flower festival bolsters tourism in Bokeo

By:  Vientiane Times, January 29, 2018 

kapok flower - orange red

Bokeo province: Government officials and crowds of visitors from neighbouring countries flocked here for the colourful Kapok Flower Festival (Dok Ngiew Festival) which opened on Saturday in Tonpheung district and ends today.

Champassak holds annual Vat Phou festival to promote Visit Laos Year

By:  Siladda Souliyong, Vientiane Times, January 30, 2018

Vat Phou candle lit at night

Champassak district:  Hundreds of thousands of local people and foreign visitors yesterday attended the opening day of the annual Vat Phou festival here, which also marks the start of Visit Laos Year in the province.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Reinforcing Forest Governance for Legal Trade

Original Title:  Process Supports PM Order No.15 Reinforcing Forest Governance for Legal Trade
By:  KPL News, January 23, 2018

Process Supports PM Order No.15 Reinforcing Forest Governance for Legal Trade

The National Steering Committee held its 3rd meeting for the Lao-EU Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) process in Champasack Province on Jan 19 to report the progress of the process.

Tripartite Meeting Held to Discuss Minimum Wage Raise

By:  KPL News, January 30, 2018

Tripartite Meeting Held to Discuss Minimum Wage Raise

A tripartite meeting between the Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare, the Lao National Federation of Trade Unions, and the National Chamber of Commerce and Industry was held last week in Vientiane to discuss the raise of minimum wage from current 900,000 kip, approximately US$109, per month.

Minimum wage hike still problematic

By:  Phetphoxay Sengpaseuth, Vientiane Times, January 29, 2018

Image of Lao money

Businesses and factories may soon be required to increase the minimum wage from the present 900,000 kip to 1.1 million kip a month in a bid to improve workers’ standard of living.

Monday, January 29, 2018

See Pak Ou Cave by drone

Locally, it's referred to as Tum Ting.  But most people know it as Pak Ou Caves.
It's located about 25km up river from Luangprabang.
Here's some beautiful drone video footage of the river and the caves.
Video Credit:  AlexPho via Youtube.

Buddhas, Caves and the Mekong River

Tum Ting.  Pak Ou Caves.  Luang Prabang, Laos.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

What Did the Laos-Cambodia Security Meeting Achieve?

The interaction highlights ongoing efforts by both sides to manage contentious issues.
By:  Prashanth Parameswaran, The Diplomat, January 24, 2018

Lao and Khmer Ministers meet
Source:  KPL

Last week, Laos and Cambodia held another iteration of a key security meeting between the two sides. Though few details were publicly disclosed, the interaction once again highlighted ongoing efforts by the two Southeast Asian states to manage some key border issues that have previously threatened to undermine ongoing cooperation in other areas.

Where Are Russia-Laos Military Ties?

A look at defense relations between the two sides with the Russian defense minister’s visit.
By:  Prashanth Parameswaran, The Diplomat, January 24, 2018

Lao and Russian Defence Ministers.  Source:  AP
Lao and Russian Defence Ministers.  Source:  AP

This week, Russia’s defense minister paid a visit to Laos as part of a wider Southeast Asia tour. His trip put the spotlight on Russia-Laos military ties, which have been developing in recent years as part of the broader relationship between the two countries.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

ETL's Calendar 2018 - January, February, March

ETL Calendar 2018 - January, February, March
ເດືອນມັງກອນ ເດືອນກຸມພາ ເດືອນມີນາ

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Will costs continue to cage Laos’ regional connectivity?

By:  Buavanh Vilavong (Ph.D. candidate at the Australian National University), East Asia Forum, January 13, 2018

Laos is among the fastest growing economies in Southeast Asia: economic growth has averaged 7.8 per cent over the past decade. Despite the slow recovery of the global economy, the country’s growth rate was 6.9 per cent in 2017 and is expected to be 7 per cent in 2018. This is buoyed by an expansion in electricity production, manufacturing and agriculture, and it occurs despite a slight drop in tourist arrivals.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Laos northern provinces prove more popular with visitors

By:  Vientiane Times, January 14, 2018

Nam Kat Yorlapa Resort in Oudomxay
Tents for campers at the Nam Kat Yorlapa Resort in Oudomxay province.

Marketing manager of the Meuang Lao tour agency in Luang Prabang province, Khamsouk Phonesavanh, told Vientiane Times on Wednesday that package tours to the central and northern provinces were up 10-15 per cent compared to the same period last year.

Laos transfers 104 telecom fraud suspects to China

By:  Xinhua News, January  12, 2018

Laos transfers 104 telecom fraud suspects to China

Photo taken on Jan. 12, 2017 shows the handover of telecom and online fraud suspects at Wattay International Airport, Vientiane, Laos. A total of 104 telecom and online fraud suspects were handed over to China on Friday in Laos' capital city Vientiane. (Xinhua/Liu Ailun)

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

United States expands assistance for UXO clearance

By:  Vientiane Times, January 15, 2018

United States expands assistance for UXO clearance
Handover ceremony.  Photo credit:  Vientiane Times

The United States has provided more assistance for the clearance of unexploded ordnance in Laos to prevent local residents being injured, disabled or killed.

Living off the land

The international NGO, GIZ Laos, is helping to improve the livelihoods and land rights for those in Northern Laos, especially among ethnic minorities. This 11 minutes video is a short profile of their wonderful work so far.

Food Market Upclose - Snake in a bottle

Market Upclose - Snake and scorpion in a bottle

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Lao forests remain under threat

By:  Somsack Pongkhao, Vientiane Times, January 11, 2018

Logging site in Bolikhamsai, Laos
Bolikhamsai, Laos

National Protected Areas (NPAs) are still under threat from illegal logging and wildlife hunting despite stronger measures imposed by the authorities to curb illicit activities.

Possibly the largest case of private sector fraud in Laos

Original Title:  800 billion kip declared lost to PS Lao Enterprise
By:   Souksakhone Vaenkeo, Vientiane Times, January 9, 2018

PS Lao Enterprise logo

More than 30,000 people have declared that they deposited a combined 800 billion kip with PS Lao Enterprise after the company unlawfully solicited money from them, authorities said yesterday.