‘Financial crisis’: Laos stops payment for public projects

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laos buddhaLao Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong said during a special government meeting in Vientiane on September 13 that Laos was running a “high debt level” and was at the brink of a “financial crisis” unless all government agencies closely control all aspects of investment and “sharpen their focus” during the upcoming 2013-14 fiscal year.

Thongsing made the statement at the close of a national meeting in Vientiane to discuss the 2013-2014 socio-economic development plan.

The country’s debt now stands at 29.8 per cent of GDP. Thongsing said the government would delay paying money owed to contractors carrying out public projects. This would take the strain off the country’s financial and currency concerns. Meanwhile, the finance sector should “rigorously collect” all sources of revenue owed to the government, he added. Salary payments to civil servants have also been delayed.

“Any projects that have not been approved by the National Assembly, as well as those where the government owes money to private contractors, will not be allowed to continue,” the prime minister said. However, it would be “acceptable” for these projects to obtain funding from sources other than the government, he said.

Thongsing also requested that no new government projects be initiated in the 2013-14 fiscal year. This would include the construction of new offices and projects that do not directly contribute to productivity. The government will also not consider payments to projects authorised after 2011.

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Reading Time: 1 minute

Lao Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong said during a special government meeting in Vientiane on September 13 that Laos was running a “high debt level” and was at the brink of a “financial crisis” unless all government agencies closely control all aspects of investment and “sharpen their focus” during the upcoming 2013-14 fiscal year.

Reading Time: 1 minute

laos buddhaLao Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong said during a special government meeting in Vientiane on September 13 that Laos was running a “high debt level” and was at the brink of a “financial crisis” unless all government agencies closely control all aspects of investment and “sharpen their focus” during the upcoming 2013-14 fiscal year.

Thongsing made the statement at the close of a national meeting in Vientiane to discuss the 2013-2014 socio-economic development plan.

The country’s debt now stands at 29.8 per cent of GDP. Thongsing said the government would delay paying money owed to contractors carrying out public projects. This would take the strain off the country’s financial and currency concerns. Meanwhile, the finance sector should “rigorously collect” all sources of revenue owed to the government, he added. Salary payments to civil servants have also been delayed.

“Any projects that have not been approved by the National Assembly, as well as those where the government owes money to private contractors, will not be allowed to continue,” the prime minister said. However, it would be “acceptable” for these projects to obtain funding from sources other than the government, he said.

Thongsing also requested that no new government projects be initiated in the 2013-14 fiscal year. This would include the construction of new offices and projects that do not directly contribute to productivity. The government will also not consider payments to projects authorised after 2011.

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