Laos Relaxes Foreign Investment Laws
In an effort to spur a targeted 7.5% economic growth target the National Assembly in Laos has passed legislation approving foreign enterprises who invest move then 2.5 billion kip (approximately US$294,000) the ability to lease land for 99 years and ownership along with right to sell buildings. The primary aim is to attract overseas Laotians along with foreigners to spur development in the country.
Tourism remains a key component to the economy with Luang Prabang garnering much attention especially with the recently opened Amantaka Resort. Viewing the real estate and property sector, clearly the new law will spur new projects. Reviewing the dialogue from the meeting of the assembly there remains much concern about relinquishing property rights as well as ensuring proper implementing guidelines and control remain vigilant.
Lao current is making economic reforms aimed at opening its own stock exchange next year and plans to become a member of the WTO. While the signs are encouraging, moving to a free market economy for the country will be a challenging and arduous task ahead.