Vientiane (VNA) -Laos licensed 3,025 projects in the 2003-04 fiscal year with a registered capital totalling 2,942 billion kip, accounting for 12.03 percent of GDP.
Of the investment capital, 1,018 billion kip was invested by domestic businesses and 1,924 billion kip by foreign ones.
According to the agencies, investment by the private sector, both domestic and foreign, has increased significantly as compared to two or three years ago, especially in the number of projects and investment capital.
Of the foreign investment in 115 projects totalling 493.8 million USD or a 12-times increase over the 2002-03 level, the energy sector accounts for 73.2 percent; transportation-post-construction, 43.4 percent; agro-forestry, 14.4 percent; education, 13.4 percent; services, 9.6 percent; healthcare, 8.2 percent; and information-culture, 3.3 percent.
Laos has issued incentives to facilitate foreign investment inflows, such as eliminating the 1-percent tax rate applied on materials and equipment imported by foreign businesses making investment in Laos.
In the fiscal 2003-04 year, Laos also received 238 million USD in grants and 140 million USD in ODA loans from international donors.--Enditem