Friday, April 12, 2013

Laos' Economy to Grow 7.7 Percent in 2013

Vientiane, Apr 12 (Prensa Latina) The economy of Laos is expected to have sustainable growth of around 7.7 percent in 2013 as resource based industries, manufacturing and services continue to generate solid growth, according to a key Asian Development Bank (ADB) report released in this capital today.

According to the ADB, this country, among the poorest in the region, will continue to see solid growth in the next few years, building on the achievements of the last five years.

However, the ADB Country Director, Chong Chi Nai, said that Laos will have to shift its focus from absolute growth to quality of growth to ensure that the increases will follow an inclusive and sustainable path.

According to the report, the substantial investment flowing into hydro-power and mining, along with the construction of hotels, offices and residential buildings, will drive this growth.

It is expected by 2013 that hydro-power plants will contribute to a 12 percent increase in power generation, the agricultural sector will provide jobs to more than 60 percent of the workforce, with recovery in rice production and expansion of the cattle industry. Tourist arrivals are expected to grow by 10-15 percent.

The ADB report predicts a benign 5.5 percent rate of inflation for 2013, with price pressures manageable for now, but said these will need to be monitored closely.

Southeast Asia was the only sub-region to see growth accelerate year-on-year in 2012, led by a recovery in Thailand and strong public spending in the Philippines. This buoyancy is set to continue, backed by robust consumption, rising investment and increased intra-regional trade, with GDP growth projected at 5.4 percent in 2013 and 5.7 percent in 2014.-Plengish News (April 12, 2013)

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