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UK Trade Envoy stresses bilateral trade links with Laos
This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
Lord David Puttnam, UK Trade Envoy for the region, is visiting Vientiane this week to strengthen bilateral trade relations with the Lao PDR.
For the second time in 6 months, UK Trade Envoy for Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, Lord David Puttnam, is touring the region to complete an ambitious programme of government meetings, high-level negotiations and engagements with UK businesses based in the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR).
Lord Puttnam’s discussions with the Lao Minister for Industry and Commerce Dr Nam Vinhaket and the Minister for Investment and Planning Mr Somdy Douangdy revolved around:
Laos’ accession to the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015
the country’s experiences as a member of the World Trade Organisation (WTO)
possibilities of strengthening bilateral trade and investment between the UK and the Lao PDR
Lord Puttnam discussed possibilities for UK companies to invest in major infrastructure opportunities in Lao PDR, such as the expansion of road 13, using the Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model where the UK has significant expertise.
At a networking reception around the topic of skills, Lord Puttnam had the opportunity to meet British business people and Lao and foreign alumni of UK universities based in the Lao PDR.
Since the re-opening of the British Embassy in Lao PDR in late 2012, there has been a steady increase in UK business interest in Laos’ emerging economy. UK goods exports to Lao PDR increased by 20% to £3.98 million in the first 11 months of 2013, compared with the same period in the previous year. Import of Lao goods to the UK also jumped by 9% to £42 million for the period.
The role of the Trade Envoy is to increase trade and investment links further. Major British companies operating in Laos include:
British brands such as Land Rover, Jaguar and JCB are also increasingly popular amongst Lao consumers.
The embassy, partnering with the European Chamber of Commerce in Laos and the regional UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) network, supports UK companies interested in the Lao market by running projects aiming at improving the business environment as well as proactively raising issues with the Lao government.
The embassy has also initiated the formation of the British Business Group, a loose networking platform for UK companies in Laos.
British Prime Minister David Cameron appointed Lord David Puttnam as Trade Envoy for Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia in November 2012 to promote trade for UK business in this fast developing economic area. Lord Puttnam last visited Laos in October 2013.
David Puttnam spent thirty years as an independent producer of award-winning films. His films have won 10 Oscars, 25 British Academy of Film & Television Arts awards and the Palme D’Or at Cannes. He retired from film production in 1998 to focus on his work in public policy, concentrating on education, the environment, and the creative and communications industries. Lord Puttnam has been the recipient of more than 40 honorary degrees from Universities in the UK and overseas. Recently, he has started delivering online film industry seminar modules to students studying at universities all around the globe.
If you are looking to develop your business in Laos and for further information, please contact Ildikó Hámos-Sohlo at the British Embassy on:
Telephone: +856 20 7717 7913