Lao People's Democratic Republic 2018 report

Policies and Measures
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
1. Promotion of Culture and Creative Industries in the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism Plan (2011-2016) and the five-year action plan (2016-2020) of the Departments under Cultural Section National legislative
2. Ensuring the protection of the Intellectual Property rights through the strengthening of Intellectual Property Law (amended 2017) National legislative
3. Encouraging the enterprises and promoting investment for cultural industries National legislative
4. Telecommunications, TVs, and mass media as a means to disseminate the cultural and creative products. Digital Broadcasting cooperation between Lao PDR and China and Law on Mass Media National institutional
5. Supporting the status and conditions of artists through professional associations National institutional
7. Supporting the development of the publishing sector in Lao PDR National institutional
8. Supporting the development of the handicrafts sector in Lao PDR National, International institutional
6. Supporting the development of the film sector in Lao PDR National institutional
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
3. Promoting cultural expressions through Lao Culture Challenge Fund (LCCF) National financial
1. Cultural co-operation through the Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN) Regional, National institutional
2. Bi-lateral cultural co-operation with Viet Nam International institutional
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
1. Preferential treatment from China for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR International institutional
2. Preferential treatment from France for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR National financial, institutional
3. Establishing Strategic Partnership between Japan and the Lao PDR for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR National legislative
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT NATIONAL LEVEL
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans National legislative
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
1. Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans National legislative
2. Promotion of traditional medicines and herbal remedies National regulatory
EMERGING TRANSVERSAL ISSUES: Resolution 5.CP 9b
Name of the measure Scope of the measure Nature
1. Enhancing public service media in Lao PDR National institutional
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

7. Supporting the development of the publishing sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to promote, develop quality of products and the love of reading among the citizens.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

At present, there are 127 media publications, including 27 newspapers (which 11 of them are daily). The sector has also established the Pasason Newspapers printing house in Champasak. Throughout the country there are 10 public libraries, in addition to mobile libraries and portable book cases (8000 in total), and reading buses and boats operated in both cities and rural areas. Since 2004, “Sinxay Literature Award” was set up and aims to favour and recognize the outstanding writers. Within the ASEAN framework, 19 Lao writers have worn the “SEAWrite Award”, 27 “Mekong Literature Award” and many other outstanding prizes of national literature. For the National Artist and Outstanding artist, a part of receiving the medal and certificate of honorific trophy they will as well receive in form of monetary award around 900 US$ and 500 US$ respectively.

The libraries at the provincial level are overseen by the Provincial Department of Information, Culture and Tourism. The National library is in charge of training librarians as well as provision of basic collection of books and printed materials. 

The publishing sector is governed by the Law on Publishing (2008), which promotes the publishing for its quantity and for its best quality, encourages creativity, reading, and education. The Law covers editing the originals of researches, productions, translation work, paintings and photography before publishing. The Law also covers the rights of the publishing houses and design shops. 

The Writers’ Association, Library’s Association and Printing’s Association coordinate the work within the sector both domestically and internationally.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

This measure is expected to foster interest among Lao people about local books to encourage the production and consumption of locally published books.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Department of Publishing; National Library
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Ministerial budget 12,000 US$ per year

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

8. Supporting the development of the handicrafts sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

Improve the quality of locally-produced handicrafts and their visibility to enhance market opportunities.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The handicraft sector represents a significant source of income. As such, the sector was identified in the 8th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2016-2020) as one of the main industries which has been growing in production. Total handicraft production value is about 3 million US$, with a growth of 15 percent per annum. There are currently investments in handicraft production, establishment of business units, grouping and support to remote areas for handicraft production. Domestic and international private investment in the handicraft sector consists of 4,237 handicraft factories. The main export markets for handicrafts are Japan, the EU and the US.

In order to improve the quality of craft products and increase their marketability, several curriculum and training programmes have been set-up.

There is also annual handicraft festival organized by the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism (MoICT) with the collaboration with the Lao Handicraft Association.

  • New curriculum on weaving and silver work
  • School of Design has a course endorsed by the Ministry of Education
  • Any TVET programme?

The government has also launched a number of initiatives to improve the visibility of the products.  

At the national level

  • Lao Handicraft day
  • Organization of trade fairs
  • Handicraft festival on retro traditional activities inspiring Old Days Atmosphere
  • Registration of Handicraft Brand name (labels)
  • One District One Product - ODOP
d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Traditional handicrafts produced by Lao ethnic people have improved patterns as well as skills for selling domestically and internationally. Lao handicrafts have received many awards from many regional competitions.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Commerce and industry
Ministry of Science and Technology, Department of Innovation
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

6. Supporting the development of the film sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To support the film sector in Lao PDR to flourish and be able to complete with any international films

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

There are a number of initiatives taking place to promote the development of the film sector in Lao PDR and leading to positive outcomes. The Government of Lao PDR has allocated fund on an annual basis to the Department of Cinema to finance film making and purchasing of equipment (e.g. this figure in 2004-2005 is 125,000 US$). Support has also been given by international donors such as from JICA for purchasing of audio-visual equipment. Every year, the Faculty of Mass communication at the National University offers five scholarships for mass communication students. For the distribution, the Luang Prabang Film Festival has been organized since 2008 with private funds and become a good venue for showing newly made films. The Department of Cinema also organizes since the 1990s mobile cinema around the country. There are over a dozens of cinema theatres currently operate in the country, 12 of them are in Vientiane Capital and Pakse.      

The Lao film makers have attended series of the international film festivals in France (Cannes), China, Thailand and within ASEAN countries. A number of films have been nominated for the international competitions. Every year from 1996 to 2014 Japan invited 3 Lao film-maker participants along with their films to their international film festivals. One of the first commercial feature-length films was Sabaidee Luang Prabang, was made in 2008. Recently a few local production companies have succeeded to produce Lao feature films and gain international recognition. Among them are Lao New Wave Cinema's At the Horizon, directed by Anysay Keola, which was screened at the OzAsia Film Festival and Lao Art Media's Chanthaly directed by Mattie Do, which was screened at the 2013 Fantastic Fest.In September 2017, Laos submitted Dearest Sister, Mattie Do's second feature film, to the 90th Academy Awards for consideration for Best Foreign Language Film, marking the country's first submission for the Oscars. There is a cartoon animation (Thao Thong Dee)  for children by a national artist with the support of a Japanese volunteer.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The quality of cinema products has greatly improved as proven by the recently received awards.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Department of Cinema
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

37,500 US$ /year from the government budget and private investment

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Cinema is still be in trend of entertainment among the young viewers.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Increase number of cineplex in the larger cities of the country.

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

1. Promotion of Culture and Creative Industries in the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism Plan (2011-2016) and the five-year action plan (2016-2020) of the Departments under Cultural Section

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To continue the protection, preservation, rehabilitation and enrichment the tradition and national cultural heritage value towards the sustainable development and civilization; at the same time to accept the other cultural values of the humanity in order to be internationally integrated. In addition, the plans also aim to build a modern cultural industry in order to contribute to the socio-economic sustainability.

 

Specifically to promote the cultural and creative industries, the following objects were identified:

  • To build-up professional associations, research institutes, awards for the cultural sectors;
  • To encourage the productions of the cultural and creative products of all sectors so they can be of high quality standards, rich and diverse;
  • To develop a cultural and creative industries database as a way to monitor its growth; and
  • To encourage exhibitions and showcases for disseminating cultural products, targeting 10 events within the country and 3 events aboard.
c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Referring to the Culture Strategy of the Report, in order to achieve the main objectives of improving and developing cultural products to be more diverse and good quality towards the cultural industry in the future, there shall be:

  • produce diverse cultural products
  • broaden and promote cultural product markets domestically and internationally in order to reinforce cultural sector by gradually increasing the income for its self-reliance
  • promote the cultural expression and support the cultural creativity of the local wisdoms and knowledge
  • to further nurture One District One Cultural Product scheme

 

Referring to the Cultural Section of the Strategy, in order to achieve the main objectives of disseminating cultural products domestically and internationally at the same time to have preventive measures of any negative influence on the society and stability of the nation, there shall be;

  • dissemination of national culture through various media means domestically and internationally;
  • participation in and organization of the exhibitions of the publishing materials, paintings, sculptures, films, VDOs and other cultural products domestically and internationally;
  • together with the local communities and private sector to organize local cultural festivals, traditional ceremonies and events;
  • encourage an organization of many exhibitions, showcases, disseminating cultural products at least 10 times in country, and at least 3 times aboard.
d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Cultural and creative industries become a stronger sector that can contribute to the national socio-economic development.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

approximately 700,000 US$ (2016-2020) covering all the relevant sectors information, culture and tourism.

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
Local
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

There has been annual internal evaluation on the implementation of the plan

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

2. Ensuring the protection of the Intellectual Property rights through the strengthening of Intellectual Property Law (amended 2017)

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To ensure the protection of Intellectual Property rights which will be beneficial to cultural and creative products

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Intellectual Property Law aims to promote, recognize and protect intellectual property right of individuals, entities and/or organizations on their inventive, innovative, creative works and products by providing policies and measures in support thereto. This includes all domains of the cultural sector or those that will be relevant to the production and dissemination of cultural products, such as audio-visual, fine arts, performing arts, literature, science fictions, programs/softwares, designs, etc...

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

All the cultural and creative products are well protected with intellectual property rights. The enterprises and investment on the cultural and creative industries are provided with a good business environment for them to flourish.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Science and Technology
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

3. Encouraging the enterprises and promoting investment for cultural industries

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

The overall objective of the measure is to create an enabling environment for the business sector in the country.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

In order to create an enabling environment for the business sector in the country, the Government of Lao PDR has established a number of relevant laws, notably the Law on Enterprises (2005), Law on Investment Promotion (2009, amended in 2016), and Law on Promotion of SMEs. While these laws do not specifically address the culture sector, their inclusive scope no doubt would make them beneficial for the emerging culture sector in the country, especially the Law on Promotion of SMEs as most cultural and creative industries business are small and individually-owned.

 

Specifically, the Law on Promotion of SMEs indicates the ways SMEs can access financial resources and receive tax incentive (Articles 15-16) and defines the registration of intellectual property.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

More business and enterprises on cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR will be established, which contribute to the diversity of cultural expressions and promotion of national socio-economic growth and improvement of livelihood of the multi-ethnic people.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Commerce
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

4. Telecommunications, TVs, and mass media as a means to disseminate the cultural and creative products. Digital Broadcasting cooperation between Lao PDR and China and Law on Mass Media

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To upgrade the analogue broadcasting to a digital broadcasting throughout the country   

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Bilateral agreement (MoUs) between Lao PDR and China.

Digital Broadcasting in Lao PDRThe objectives of the Law is to service 25% of family households in both two standards (DTMB and DVBT) Nationwide in 2020 aligned with the National Roadmap and to support DTMB Technology as a priority projects and network development to rural area.

Law on Mass Media (2008 amended 2017)

Article 4-5 define the overall policies on promotion, protection and advancing the media capabilities, freedom of the press and all kinds of its diffusions as well as cooperation with foreign countries on the basis of mutual respect of independence and sovereignty. Article 25 has stated on the entertainment which is one of the mass media tasks for providing entertainment to the society as well as to educate, disseminate, guide and encourage the citizens to actively participate in the development of the nation. The entertainment broadcasting should comply with the national policy, customs and good tradition of ethnic culture that could be integrated with regional and international community as well.

   Community Radio

The Government of Lao PDR through the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism recognised that Community Radio has an important role to play to in the development of Lao PDR. In this media landscape, the community radio stations offer a unique channel for community-led media. The volunteers under the Youth Union operate seven Community Radio Stations across four provinces and broadcast in two main ethnic group languages (Hmong and Khmu). Local volunteers include men, women and youth who share a common goal of helping to improve their communities while learning new skills.

Youth Radio

UNICEF supported the Youth Radio in all the provinces particularly the provinces where there are a large group of ethnic groups, with the focus at the district levels. The objective is to build capacity of youth to broadcast their own culture, health, and risk of UXO dangers.

 

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

All the Lao people and others can enjoy and appreciate the cultural and creative products and are proud of their own culture.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Telecommunications
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The transition from analogue to digital broadcasting will be accomplished by 2020.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

TV, radio broadcasting and telecommunication supports

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

5. Supporting the status and conditions of artists through professional associations

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To protect the rights of artists and to offer them support services and facilitation

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The government promotes various professional associations, which serve as platforms for culture and art practitioners to exchange information, for the older generations to nurture the younger generations, and for ensuring that the rights of the art and culture practitioners are protected. Further, each association has its own direction and mandate. For example, the Association of Artists was established in 2015 with the policy of supporting professional artists. Membership is open to artists working in the public and private sectors. The Association offers support to artists and their families in their difficult times. It also gives awards for outstanding performance in the arts. The Association of Songwriters helps to protect the rights and ensure that royalties are paid to them. The Lao Writers’ Association, which was set up in the 1990s recognizes outstanding writers through the Mekong Awards and S.E.A. Write Awards. The Association also connects with Writers’ Association of neighbouring and ASEAN countries.

The professional associations nevertheless only enjoy a quasi-independent status, as most of them have been established under relevant government’s ministries and departments. While the associations have their own operational mechanism and charters, they often follow the broad direction set out by the government and therefore do not address with issues considered sensitive by the government such as censorship.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Overall, the associations aim to improve the working and living conditions of artists, which will result in higher quality cultural products.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Home Affairs;
Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Science and Technology;
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Membership fees and fund raising through cultural events.

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

1. Cultural co-operation through the Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN)

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To promote regional multilateral cultural co-operation through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
Regional
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Main feature of the measure: Lao PDR promotes regional multilateral cultural co-operation through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which was established in 1967 and has just commemorated its 50th anniversary this year. Lao PDR joined ASEAN in 1997. Socio-cultural co-operation is one of the 3 pillars of the ASEAN co-operation. Lao PDR is currently the Chair of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC). Lao PDR is supporting various cultural initiatives through ASEAN such as: ASEAN Young Contemporary Music Concert (23-27 August 2017, Vientiane, Lao PDR), the very first Writers Symposium and ASEAN Literary Books Exhibition (scheduled for May 2018 in Lao PDR) and National Identity Sculpturing  Camp for Young ASEAN Fine Arts Students (scheduled for 2018 in Lao PDR). Media co-operation is also taking place through the ASEAN framework – for example, ASEAN Today Radio programme, annual ASEAN Journalists’ Exchange, and Workshop on manuscripts palm leaves in ASEAN (14-17 December 2015). These events facilitated the exchange of artists from different domains in ASEAN countries.

 

These events strengthened the cultural and creative industries of the ten ASEAN members network, to understand all the cultures, people-to-people relationship for sharing experiences and cultures in the specific domain. The main feature of the cooperation is for performing arts.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Through the activities undertaken, greater exchange and co-operation is fostered among artists in South-East Asia

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism (MoICT)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

50,000 US$ per year

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

2. Bi-lateral cultural co-operation with Viet Nam

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To support continued bi-lateral cultural exchange and co-operation with Viet Nam

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The agreement comes in the context of 55 years of Lao PDR-Viet Nam bilateral co-operation and 40 years of the Vietnam-Lao PDR Treaty on Amity and Co-operation. 2017 is being commemorated as Viet Nam-Lao PDR Solidarity and Friendship Year 2017. Cultural exchanges between Lao PDR and Viet Nam. Shared history publishing books between the two countries.

Various cultural activities are taking place during the Cultural Week as part of this bilateral agreement including Live VDO callings for the performing arts event, circus performances, cultural tourism books publishing for both countries. Exchanges of high level delegations as well as capacity building of public sector officials are taking place as part of this MoU.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The relationships between the two nations people are strengthened through better understand of each nation culture. To share lessons-learned and experiences, cultural knowledge on multi-cooperation management.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Relations, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.
Department of Performing Arts,
Department of Fine Arts,
Department of Publishing,
Lao National TV,
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Ministerial, government budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Closer exchange, communication and  strengthening cooperation between two countries.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Mutual exchange of delegations and professionals in different levels.

❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

3. Promoting cultural expressions through Lao Culture Challenge Fund (LCCF)

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To provide financial grants and training opportunities for businesses and civil society organisations in Lao PDR to promote cultural expressions

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
financial
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Under the theme, “Lao, for Lao”, the LCCF fund was set up in 2004 provides financial grants and training opportunities for Lao organisations to promote the creation, production and distribution of cultural expressions in the country. LCCF is a partnership between the government of Switzerland and Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd. Funding comes through the Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation (SDC). Switzerland has a policy that 1% of its overall budget must be spent on cultural promotion. This applies to the SDC, which has a programme budget US$ 18 million for 2017-2021. This is a recurring fund. Selection is through an open call for applications across all provinces of the country.

 

Two cycles of the fund have been completed and 20 different organisations have been supported for cultural activities and to improve their institutional capacities. In cycles 1 & 2, local organisations funded include Action for Lao Children, Click, Creative Writers' Group, Dokked, Fang Lao, Khao Niew Theatre Group, Lao Art Media, Lao Bang Fai, Lao Handicraft Association, Pha Tad Ke Botanical Gardens, Maison de la Culture, My Library. The third cycle is being held in 2017-2018. The fund encourages cultural expressions and strengthens cultural identity at the local and national levels. In addition, application writing workshops are also offered to support interested organisations. Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd serves as an information hub, guides the application and proposal process, training organisers and monitoring activities.

 

The domains cover performing arts companies like contemporary dances, puppets theatre including puppets and theatre, books and library for folklores (books for folklores + ethnic and book festival), botanical education and cultural activities in botanic garden, public creative library in Luang Prabang; music by supporting the very first Vang Vieng Music Festival in Lao PDR; films i.e. featured documentary, fine arts i.e. artist installation exhibitions, fine art gallery.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

To promote the diversity of cultural expressions, and to enhance access to cultural activities. The “From Laos, For Laos” strategy expects to strengthen the cultural identity, social cohesion and intercultural exchanges, as well as to richness and diversity of local cultural life.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation to Lao PDR (SDC)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

 180,000 US$

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd.
Type of Entity: 
Private company
Type of Involvement: 

Coordinating Partner  

h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

There is an audit to evaluate the company once every cycle (2-year).

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

 Website for Virtual CulturenHub

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

1. Preferential treatment from China for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To promote the cultural exchange and enhance friendship of cultures between two nations

MOU between the Ministry of Information, Culture, and Tourism of Lao PDR and Ministry of Culture of China (2016-2018)

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

People’s Republic of China supports musical instrument and audio-visual equipment to the Department of Performing Arts. Trainings are provided to Lao governmental officers of Department of Performing Arts on how to use the equipment. Fine Arts Institute and Chinese Culture Centre in Vientiane organizes fine arts cultural and creative products exhibition. In addition, there was also an exchange of Fine Arts artists between the two nations.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Supporting mutual understanding and cultural promotion among the people of two nations

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism (MoICT)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

n/a

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

the cooperation between Lao PDR and PR of China is considered as priority and long term strategy.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Exchanges of delegations, culture infrastructure and audio visual equipment assistance.

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

2. Preferential treatment from France for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to collaborate and to exchange of the two cultures.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
financial
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

There is a long-term bilateral agreement between France and Lao PDR. The cultural and creative activities are organized and supported by the Institut Francais du Laos (IF) and the Embassy of France. The activities taken place range from contemporary plays, literatures, concerts, exhibitions, and languages.

The cultural programme is to support the Lao artists through conferences, concerns, plays which are regularly programmed. There are a Research Week for Development, Comic Strip Festival for Environment, the World Music Day. The IF also support local cultural creations and events such as Festival for Performing Arts, FMK dance festival, and theatrical creation.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The understanding of the two cultures is strengthened.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Institut Francais
Jumelage of world heritage cities - Chinon and Luang Prabang
French Agency for Development (AFD)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Over 2 million EUROs for PADUL phaseII (Luang Prabang and Vat Phou)

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Reinforcement of institutional and human capacity on managerial and promotion of the world herutage values.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Annual audit.

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

3. Establishing Strategic Partnership between Japan and the Lao PDR for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to promote comprehensive partnerships towards enduring friendship and regional prosperity. 

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

A Joint Statement was signed between the two Prime Ministers in 2015 to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Laos. The Joint Statement covers several areas including political and security area, economic cooperation, trade and investment and people-to-people and cultural exchange. Arts and culture collaboration have already benefited a programme of exchanges for approximately 1,500 participants up until 2017, and will benefit approximately 1,500 more until 2020.

Lao-Japan Research Centre was established in the National University including languages, cultural exchanges covering several domains i.e. literatures, performing arts.

Annual cultural exchange programme to showcase each country cultural products including cuisine, traditional dress, handicrafts, traditional souvenirs since 2007.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Stronger cooperation at the regional level and international level.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

n/a

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
International
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Exchange and promotion culture between two people to better mutual understanding and stimulating the cultural products,

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Cultural events on various topics in both countries

❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT NATIONAL LEVEL

Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT NATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To achieve sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction while gradually transforming Lao PDR into a more open, strengthening the productivity and capacity of the cultural and creative industries and prioritizing the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Government of Lao PDR has long recognized the role of local culture, knowledge and skills as a means to create jobs and improve economic development. Culture is seen as the main foundation for sustainable development of the nation, leading to solidarity in the society and pushing the society to expand and integrate at the regional and international levels.

The evaluation of the 7th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2011-2015) acknowledged how local skills, together with new techniques, have shifted many families in the bordered and priority areas of the country from slash-and-burn rice cultivation to commercial production, to secure permanent jobs as well as ensure improved livelihoods. Handicrafts sector is fast developing, with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum and currently valued about 2,850 billion kip (equivalent 340,000,000 US$), with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum. Lao handicraft products are popular domestically and exported to Japan, the EU and the US. Eco- and cultural tourism has been promoted through community-based tourism initiatives, bringing in a revenue of approximately 725,000,000 US$ in 2015. The ‘one village one product’ approach has been enacted to promote local and cultural resources for sustainable development.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

- Lao handicraft products have developed with inheritance value for each local area and high quality, with high domestic and foreign market demand;

- Tourism has developed based on the application of natural, cultural and historic inheritance potential in an effective and sustainable manner through participation of the people, and transformed into a revenue generating sector of the country to create employment and income for the local population

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
National government (inter-ministerial)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget (central and local), secured on an annual basis

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The Socio-Economic Development Plans are developed every five years and evaluated at the end of each period. The 7th plan was developed for the 2011-2015 period, the results of its implementation were reviewed while preparing for the 8th plan (2016-2020). The evaluation acknowledged an improvement in the socio-economic development, with contribution from the culture sector.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 
    • The growth rate in the handicrafts and tourism sectors
❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

1. Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To achieve sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction while gradually transforming Lao PDR into a more open, strengthening the productivity and capacity of the cultural and creative industries and prioritizing the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Government of Lao PDR has long recognized the role of local culture, knowledge and skills as a means to create jobs and improve economic development. Culture is seen as the main foundation for sustainable development of the nation, leading to solidarity in the society and pushing the society to expand and integrate at the regional and international levels.

The evaluation of the 7th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2011-2015) acknowledged how local skills, together with new techniques, have shifted many families in the bordered and priority areas of the country from slash-and-burn rice cultivation to commercial production, to secure permanent jobs as well as ensure improved livelihoods. Handicrafts sector is fast developing, with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum and currently valued about 2,850 billion kip (equivalent 340,000,000 US$), with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum. Lao handicraft products are popular domestically and exported to Japan, the EU and the US. Eco- and cultural tourism has been promoted through community-based tourism initiatives, bringing in a revenue of approximately 725,000,000 US$ in 2015. The ‘one village one product’ approach has been enacted to promote local and cultural resources for sustainable development.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 
  • Lao handicraft products have developed with inheritance value for each local area and high quality, with high domestic and foreign market demand;
  •  Tourism has developed based on the application of natural, cultural and historic inheritance potential in an effective and sustainable manner through participation of the people, and transformed into a revenue generating sector of the country to create employment and income for the local population
f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
National government (inter-ministerial)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget (central and local), secured on an annual basis

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The Socio-Economic Development Plans are developed every five years and evaluated at the end of each period. The 7th plan was developed for the 2011-2015 period, the results of its implementation were reviewed while preparing for the 8th plan (2016-2020). The evaluation acknowledged an improvement in the socio-economic development, with contribution from the culture sector.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 
    • The growth rate in the handicrafts and tourism sectors
❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

2. Promotion of traditional medicines and herbal remedies

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

Promoting local knowledge related to plants and medicines in order to safeguard local knowledge while providing quality and culturally-appropriate health services.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
regulatory
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Traditional medicines have always played a key role in the health care practices of Lao populations. The Government encourages the use of traditional medicines and herbal remedies, especially in rural areas where there are few or no hospitals and medical clinics.

The Law on Drugs and Medical Products (established in 2000, amended in 2011) officially recognizes the role of traditional medicines. Article 4 of the law stipulates that “the State promotes the integration of the use between modern drugs and traditional medicines effectively and safely in disease prevention and treatment and encourages the integration, use and development of traditional medicines in the health service system”. Article 5 requires that the “produce and use of drugs and medical products” are carried out “in junction with protection of environment and ensure the sustainability of medicinal natural resources”.

The University of Health Sciences is implementing a 5-year plan to create a Bachelor program on Traditional Medicines. There is also a proposal for non-formal training for traditional healers but currently not implemented due to lack of funds.

So far, 12,500 species of medicinal plants have been identified, of which 2000 are properly documented by the Institute of Traditional Medicines. These include information on the plants and their uses, including extraction and production. The major problem however is the lack of standardisation and accredited laboratories for assessing traditional medicines. An MOU has been signed between the Governments of Lao PDR and China for the development of standards and assessment and establishment of testing facilities.

The Food and Drugs Department works closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry in relations to forest products. So far one natural product, ’Chandai’, has been certified and used for blood circulation.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Increased access to quality traditional health services and remedies.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the Ministry of Industries and Commerce, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and Ministry of Natural Resources
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget, together with direct investment from private sector companies that involve in product development

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ EMERGING TRANSVERSAL ISSUES: Resolution 5.CP 9b

1. Enhancing public service media in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
EMERGING TRANSVERSAL ISSUES: Resolution 5.CP 9b
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To improve the accessibility to quality public programs in Lao PDR

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Lao PDR has a national strategy to move from analogue to digital by 2025. In line with this, the technology used in the media sector is being upgraded through both national resources and international support. These measures are complemented by exchange of media personnel with other countries.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Lao citizens will have received more updated and quality media content, available in Lao, ethnic minorities’ and foreign languages.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of Mass Media, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
Ministry of Post and Telecommunication
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

State budget together with private sector investment

h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The evaluation was done as part of the review of the 7th Socio-Economic Development Plan which ended in 2015. The transition to digital technology (currently 50% realized) has led to the improvement of the communication sector and expanded the mass media system quantitatively and qualitatively. The land-based transmission includes 63 radio stations, covering 95 percent of the country and delivering to the public a total of 700 hours per day, in the languages of Lao, Hmong, Khamou, French, English, Khmer, Thai, Vietnamese and Chinese. Programs in ethnic languages - Khamou and Hmong are broadcasted 3 times a day (in total 2 hours for each language) on frequencies AM  6130 KHz and on FM 94.3 MHz; 95 MHz ; 97.3 MHz and  103.7 MHz, delivering programs on news, information and success stories, music and other types of entertainment such as dramas.

 

The TV media have also developed its quality and improved the broadcast content. Currently there are 37 TV stations (29 of which are public), both video and audio broadcasting covers 80 percent of the country’s area, while satellite covers 100 percent of the country’s area. Local stations are also active and broadcast at least 2-3 hours a day of locally produced programs. The print media have expanded quantitatively and qualitatively. At present, there are 127 media publication, including 27 newspapers (11 of which are daily). Radio broadcast speakers have been installed in various villages across the country, including 4,635 targeted villages, accounting for over 50 percent of the total villages.

Name of the designated official signing the report
Title:
Mr
Family Name:
Phothisane
First Name:
Thongbay
Position:
Director General
Organization:
Department of Heritage, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

7. Supporting the development of the publishing sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to promote, develop quality of products and the love of reading among the citizens.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

At present, there are 127 media publications, including 27 newspapers (which 11 of them are daily). The sector has also established the Pasason Newspapers printing house in Champasak. Throughout the country there are 10 public libraries, in addition to mobile libraries and portable book cases (8000 in total), and reading buses and boats operated in both cities and rural areas. Since 2004, “Sinxay Literature Award” was set up and aims to favour and recognize the outstanding writers. Within the ASEAN framework, 19 Lao writers have worn the “SEAWrite Award”, 27 “Mekong Literature Award” and many other outstanding prizes of national literature. For the National Artist and Outstanding artist, a part of receiving the medal and certificate of honorific trophy they will as well receive in form of monetary award around 900 US$ and 500 US$ respectively.

The libraries at the provincial level are overseen by the Provincial Department of Information, Culture and Tourism. The National library is in charge of training librarians as well as provision of basic collection of books and printed materials. 

The publishing sector is governed by the Law on Publishing (2008), which promotes the publishing for its quantity and for its best quality, encourages creativity, reading, and education. The Law covers editing the originals of researches, productions, translation work, paintings and photography before publishing. The Law also covers the rights of the publishing houses and design shops. 

The Writers’ Association, Library’s Association and Printing’s Association coordinate the work within the sector both domestically and internationally.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

This measure is expected to foster interest among Lao people about local books to encourage the production and consumption of locally published books.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Department of Publishing; National Library
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Ministerial budget 12,000 US$ per year

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

8. Supporting the development of the handicrafts sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

Improve the quality of locally-produced handicrafts and their visibility to enhance market opportunities.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The handicraft sector represents a significant source of income. As such, the sector was identified in the 8th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2016-2020) as one of the main industries which has been growing in production. Total handicraft production value is about 3 million US$, with a growth of 15 percent per annum. There are currently investments in handicraft production, establishment of business units, grouping and support to remote areas for handicraft production. Domestic and international private investment in the handicraft sector consists of 4,237 handicraft factories. The main export markets for handicrafts are Japan, the EU and the US.

In order to improve the quality of craft products and increase their marketability, several curriculum and training programmes have been set-up.

There is also annual handicraft festival organized by the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism (MoICT) with the collaboration with the Lao Handicraft Association.

  • New curriculum on weaving and silver work
  • School of Design has a course endorsed by the Ministry of Education
  • Any TVET programme?

The government has also launched a number of initiatives to improve the visibility of the products.  

At the national level

  • Lao Handicraft day
  • Organization of trade fairs
  • Handicraft festival on retro traditional activities inspiring Old Days Atmosphere
  • Registration of Handicraft Brand name (labels)
  • One District One Product - ODOP
d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Traditional handicrafts produced by Lao ethnic people have improved patterns as well as skills for selling domestically and internationally. Lao handicrafts have received many awards from many regional competitions.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Commerce and industry
Ministry of Science and Technology, Department of Innovation
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

6. Supporting the development of the film sector in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To support the film sector in Lao PDR to flourish and be able to complete with any international films

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

There are a number of initiatives taking place to promote the development of the film sector in Lao PDR and leading to positive outcomes. The Government of Lao PDR has allocated fund on an annual basis to the Department of Cinema to finance film making and purchasing of equipment (e.g. this figure in 2004-2005 is 125,000 US$). Support has also been given by international donors such as from JICA for purchasing of audio-visual equipment. Every year, the Faculty of Mass communication at the National University offers five scholarships for mass communication students. For the distribution, the Luang Prabang Film Festival has been organized since 2008 with private funds and become a good venue for showing newly made films. The Department of Cinema also organizes since the 1990s mobile cinema around the country. There are over a dozens of cinema theatres currently operate in the country, 12 of them are in Vientiane Capital and Pakse.      

The Lao film makers have attended series of the international film festivals in France (Cannes), China, Thailand and within ASEAN countries. A number of films have been nominated for the international competitions. Every year from 1996 to 2014 Japan invited 3 Lao film-maker participants along with their films to their international film festivals. One of the first commercial feature-length films was Sabaidee Luang Prabang, was made in 2008. Recently a few local production companies have succeeded to produce Lao feature films and gain international recognition. Among them are Lao New Wave Cinema's At the Horizon, directed by Anysay Keola, which was screened at the OzAsia Film Festival and Lao Art Media's Chanthaly directed by Mattie Do, which was screened at the 2013 Fantastic Fest.In September 2017, Laos submitted Dearest Sister, Mattie Do's second feature film, to the 90th Academy Awards for consideration for Best Foreign Language Film, marking the country's first submission for the Oscars. There is a cartoon animation (Thao Thong Dee)  for children by a national artist with the support of a Japanese volunteer.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The quality of cinema products has greatly improved as proven by the recently received awards.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Department of Cinema
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

37,500 US$ /year from the government budget and private investment

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Cinema is still be in trend of entertainment among the young viewers.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Increase number of cineplex in the larger cities of the country.

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

1. Promotion of Culture and Creative Industries in the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism Plan (2011-2016) and the five-year action plan (2016-2020) of the Departments under Cultural Section

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To continue the protection, preservation, rehabilitation and enrichment the tradition and national cultural heritage value towards the sustainable development and civilization; at the same time to accept the other cultural values of the humanity in order to be internationally integrated. In addition, the plans also aim to build a modern cultural industry in order to contribute to the socio-economic sustainability.

 

Specifically to promote the cultural and creative industries, the following objects were identified:

  • To build-up professional associations, research institutes, awards for the cultural sectors;
  • To encourage the productions of the cultural and creative products of all sectors so they can be of high quality standards, rich and diverse;
  • To develop a cultural and creative industries database as a way to monitor its growth; and
  • To encourage exhibitions and showcases for disseminating cultural products, targeting 10 events within the country and 3 events aboard.
c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Referring to the Culture Strategy of the Report, in order to achieve the main objectives of improving and developing cultural products to be more diverse and good quality towards the cultural industry in the future, there shall be:

  • produce diverse cultural products
  • broaden and promote cultural product markets domestically and internationally in order to reinforce cultural sector by gradually increasing the income for its self-reliance
  • promote the cultural expression and support the cultural creativity of the local wisdoms and knowledge
  • to further nurture One District One Cultural Product scheme

 

Referring to the Cultural Section of the Strategy, in order to achieve the main objectives of disseminating cultural products domestically and internationally at the same time to have preventive measures of any negative influence on the society and stability of the nation, there shall be;

  • dissemination of national culture through various media means domestically and internationally;
  • participation in and organization of the exhibitions of the publishing materials, paintings, sculptures, films, VDOs and other cultural products domestically and internationally;
  • together with the local communities and private sector to organize local cultural festivals, traditional ceremonies and events;
  • encourage an organization of many exhibitions, showcases, disseminating cultural products at least 10 times in country, and at least 3 times aboard.
d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Cultural and creative industries become a stronger sector that can contribute to the national socio-economic development.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

approximately 700,000 US$ (2016-2020) covering all the relevant sectors information, culture and tourism.

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
Local
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

There has been annual internal evaluation on the implementation of the plan

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

2. Ensuring the protection of the Intellectual Property rights through the strengthening of Intellectual Property Law (amended 2017)

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To ensure the protection of Intellectual Property rights which will be beneficial to cultural and creative products

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Intellectual Property Law aims to promote, recognize and protect intellectual property right of individuals, entities and/or organizations on their inventive, innovative, creative works and products by providing policies and measures in support thereto. This includes all domains of the cultural sector or those that will be relevant to the production and dissemination of cultural products, such as audio-visual, fine arts, performing arts, literature, science fictions, programs/softwares, designs, etc...

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

All the cultural and creative products are well protected with intellectual property rights. The enterprises and investment on the cultural and creative industries are provided with a good business environment for them to flourish.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Science and Technology
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

3. Encouraging the enterprises and promoting investment for cultural industries

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

The overall objective of the measure is to create an enabling environment for the business sector in the country.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

In order to create an enabling environment for the business sector in the country, the Government of Lao PDR has established a number of relevant laws, notably the Law on Enterprises (2005), Law on Investment Promotion (2009, amended in 2016), and Law on Promotion of SMEs. While these laws do not specifically address the culture sector, their inclusive scope no doubt would make them beneficial for the emerging culture sector in the country, especially the Law on Promotion of SMEs as most cultural and creative industries business are small and individually-owned.

 

Specifically, the Law on Promotion of SMEs indicates the ways SMEs can access financial resources and receive tax incentive (Articles 15-16) and defines the registration of intellectual property.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

More business and enterprises on cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR will be established, which contribute to the diversity of cultural expressions and promotion of national socio-economic growth and improvement of livelihood of the multi-ethnic people.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Commerce
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

4. Telecommunications, TVs, and mass media as a means to disseminate the cultural and creative products. Digital Broadcasting cooperation between Lao PDR and China and Law on Mass Media

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To upgrade the analogue broadcasting to a digital broadcasting throughout the country   

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Bilateral agreement (MoUs) between Lao PDR and China.

Digital Broadcasting in Lao PDRThe objectives of the Law is to service 25% of family households in both two standards (DTMB and DVBT) Nationwide in 2020 aligned with the National Roadmap and to support DTMB Technology as a priority projects and network development to rural area.

Law on Mass Media (2008 amended 2017)

Article 4-5 define the overall policies on promotion, protection and advancing the media capabilities, freedom of the press and all kinds of its diffusions as well as cooperation with foreign countries on the basis of mutual respect of independence and sovereignty. Article 25 has stated on the entertainment which is one of the mass media tasks for providing entertainment to the society as well as to educate, disseminate, guide and encourage the citizens to actively participate in the development of the nation. The entertainment broadcasting should comply with the national policy, customs and good tradition of ethnic culture that could be integrated with regional and international community as well.

   Community Radio

The Government of Lao PDR through the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism recognised that Community Radio has an important role to play to in the development of Lao PDR. In this media landscape, the community radio stations offer a unique channel for community-led media. The volunteers under the Youth Union operate seven Community Radio Stations across four provinces and broadcast in two main ethnic group languages (Hmong and Khmu). Local volunteers include men, women and youth who share a common goal of helping to improve their communities while learning new skills.

Youth Radio

UNICEF supported the Youth Radio in all the provinces particularly the provinces where there are a large group of ethnic groups, with the focus at the district levels. The objective is to build capacity of youth to broadcast their own culture, health, and risk of UXO dangers.

 

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

All the Lao people and others can enjoy and appreciate the cultural and creative products and are proud of their own culture.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Telecommunications
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Annual ministerial budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The transition from analogue to digital broadcasting will be accomplished by 2020.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

TV, radio broadcasting and telecommunication supports

❭ CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES

5. Supporting the status and conditions of artists through professional associations

Context of the measure: 
CULTURAL POLICIES AND MEASURES
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To protect the rights of artists and to offer them support services and facilitation

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The government promotes various professional associations, which serve as platforms for culture and art practitioners to exchange information, for the older generations to nurture the younger generations, and for ensuring that the rights of the art and culture practitioners are protected. Further, each association has its own direction and mandate. For example, the Association of Artists was established in 2015 with the policy of supporting professional artists. Membership is open to artists working in the public and private sectors. The Association offers support to artists and their families in their difficult times. It also gives awards for outstanding performance in the arts. The Association of Songwriters helps to protect the rights and ensure that royalties are paid to them. The Lao Writers’ Association, which was set up in the 1990s recognizes outstanding writers through the Mekong Awards and S.E.A. Write Awards. The Association also connects with Writers’ Association of neighbouring and ASEAN countries.

The professional associations nevertheless only enjoy a quasi-independent status, as most of them have been established under relevant government’s ministries and departments. While the associations have their own operational mechanism and charters, they often follow the broad direction set out by the government and therefore do not address with issues considered sensitive by the government such as censorship.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Overall, the associations aim to improve the working and living conditions of artists, which will result in higher quality cultural products.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Home Affairs;
Department of Intellectual Property, Ministry of Science and Technology;
Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Membership fees and fund raising through cultural events.

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

1. Cultural co-operation through the Association of South-east Asian Nations (ASEAN)

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To promote regional multilateral cultural co-operation through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN)

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
Regional
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Main feature of the measure: Lao PDR promotes regional multilateral cultural co-operation through the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which was established in 1967 and has just commemorated its 50th anniversary this year. Lao PDR joined ASEAN in 1997. Socio-cultural co-operation is one of the 3 pillars of the ASEAN co-operation. Lao PDR is currently the Chair of the ASEAN Socio-Cultural Community (ASCC). Lao PDR is supporting various cultural initiatives through ASEAN such as: ASEAN Young Contemporary Music Concert (23-27 August 2017, Vientiane, Lao PDR), the very first Writers Symposium and ASEAN Literary Books Exhibition (scheduled for May 2018 in Lao PDR) and National Identity Sculpturing  Camp for Young ASEAN Fine Arts Students (scheduled for 2018 in Lao PDR). Media co-operation is also taking place through the ASEAN framework – for example, ASEAN Today Radio programme, annual ASEAN Journalists’ Exchange, and Workshop on manuscripts palm leaves in ASEAN (14-17 December 2015). These events facilitated the exchange of artists from different domains in ASEAN countries.

 

These events strengthened the cultural and creative industries of the ten ASEAN members network, to understand all the cultures, people-to-people relationship for sharing experiences and cultures in the specific domain. The main feature of the cooperation is for performing arts.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Through the activities undertaken, greater exchange and co-operation is fostered among artists in South-East Asia

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism (MoICT)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

50,000 US$ per year

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

2. Bi-lateral cultural co-operation with Viet Nam

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To support continued bi-lateral cultural exchange and co-operation with Viet Nam

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The agreement comes in the context of 55 years of Lao PDR-Viet Nam bilateral co-operation and 40 years of the Vietnam-Lao PDR Treaty on Amity and Co-operation. 2017 is being commemorated as Viet Nam-Lao PDR Solidarity and Friendship Year 2017. Cultural exchanges between Lao PDR and Viet Nam. Shared history publishing books between the two countries.

Various cultural activities are taking place during the Cultural Week as part of this bilateral agreement including Live VDO callings for the performing arts event, circus performances, cultural tourism books publishing for both countries. Exchanges of high level delegations as well as capacity building of public sector officials are taking place as part of this MoU.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The relationships between the two nations people are strengthened through better understand of each nation culture. To share lessons-learned and experiences, cultural knowledge on multi-cooperation management.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Relations, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism.
Department of Performing Arts,
Department of Fine Arts,
Department of Publishing,
Lao National TV,
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Ministerial, government budget

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Closer exchange, communication and  strengthening cooperation between two countries.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Mutual exchange of delegations and professionals in different levels.

❭ INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION

3. Promoting cultural expressions through Lao Culture Challenge Fund (LCCF)

Context of the measure: 
INTERNATIONAL CULTURAL COOPERATION
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To provide financial grants and training opportunities for businesses and civil society organisations in Lao PDR to promote cultural expressions

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
financial
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Under the theme, “Lao, for Lao”, the LCCF fund was set up in 2004 provides financial grants and training opportunities for Lao organisations to promote the creation, production and distribution of cultural expressions in the country. LCCF is a partnership between the government of Switzerland and Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd. Funding comes through the Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation (SDC). Switzerland has a policy that 1% of its overall budget must be spent on cultural promotion. This applies to the SDC, which has a programme budget US$ 18 million for 2017-2021. This is a recurring fund. Selection is through an open call for applications across all provinces of the country.

 

Two cycles of the fund have been completed and 20 different organisations have been supported for cultural activities and to improve their institutional capacities. In cycles 1 & 2, local organisations funded include Action for Lao Children, Click, Creative Writers' Group, Dokked, Fang Lao, Khao Niew Theatre Group, Lao Art Media, Lao Bang Fai, Lao Handicraft Association, Pha Tad Ke Botanical Gardens, Maison de la Culture, My Library. The third cycle is being held in 2017-2018. The fund encourages cultural expressions and strengthens cultural identity at the local and national levels. In addition, application writing workshops are also offered to support interested organisations. Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd serves as an information hub, guides the application and proposal process, training organisers and monitoring activities.

 

The domains cover performing arts companies like contemporary dances, puppets theatre including puppets and theatre, books and library for folklores (books for folklores + ethnic and book festival), botanical education and cultural activities in botanic garden, public creative library in Luang Prabang; music by supporting the very first Vang Vieng Music Festival in Lao PDR; films i.e. featured documentary, fine arts i.e. artist installation exhibitions, fine art gallery.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
Yes
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

To promote the diversity of cultural expressions, and to enhance access to cultural activities. The “From Laos, For Laos” strategy expects to strengthen the cultural identity, social cohesion and intercultural exchanges, as well as to richness and diversity of local cultural life.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation to Lao PDR (SDC)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

 180,000 US$

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
Sisanchai Sole Co Ltd.
Type of Entity: 
Private company
Type of Involvement: 

Coordinating Partner  

h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

There is an audit to evaluate the company once every cycle (2-year).

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

 Website for Virtual CulturenHub

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

1. Preferential treatment from China for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To promote the cultural exchange and enhance friendship of cultures between two nations

MOU between the Ministry of Information, Culture, and Tourism of Lao PDR and Ministry of Culture of China (2016-2018)

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
International
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

People’s Republic of China supports musical instrument and audio-visual equipment to the Department of Performing Arts. Trainings are provided to Lao governmental officers of Department of Performing Arts on how to use the equipment. Fine Arts Institute and Chinese Culture Centre in Vientiane organizes fine arts cultural and creative products exhibition. In addition, there was also an exchange of Fine Arts artists between the two nations.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Supporting mutual understanding and cultural promotion among the people of two nations

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism (MoICT)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

n/a

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
Yes
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

the cooperation between Lao PDR and PR of China is considered as priority and long term strategy.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Exchanges of delegations, culture infrastructure and audio visual equipment assistance.

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

2. Preferential treatment from France for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to collaborate and to exchange of the two cultures.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
financial
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

There is a long-term bilateral agreement between France and Lao PDR. The cultural and creative activities are organized and supported by the Institut Francais du Laos (IF) and the Embassy of France. The activities taken place range from contemporary plays, literatures, concerts, exhibitions, and languages.

The cultural programme is to support the Lao artists through conferences, concerns, plays which are regularly programmed. There are a Research Week for Development, Comic Strip Festival for Environment, the World Music Day. The IF also support local cultural creations and events such as Festival for Performing Arts, FMK dance festival, and theatrical creation.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

The understanding of the two cultures is strengthened.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Institut Francais
Jumelage of world heritage cities - Chinon and Luang Prabang
French Agency for Development (AFD)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Over 2 million EUROs for PADUL phaseII (Luang Prabang and Vat Phou)

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Reinforcement of institutional and human capacity on managerial and promotion of the world herutage values.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Annual audit.

❭ PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT

3. Establishing Strategic Partnership between Japan and the Lao PDR for cultural and creative industries in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
PREFERENTIAL TREATMENT
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

to promote comprehensive partnerships towards enduring friendship and regional prosperity. 

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

A Joint Statement was signed between the two Prime Ministers in 2015 to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Japan and Laos. The Joint Statement covers several areas including political and security area, economic cooperation, trade and investment and people-to-people and cultural exchange. Arts and culture collaboration have already benefited a programme of exchanges for approximately 1,500 participants up until 2017, and will benefit approximately 1,500 more until 2020.

Lao-Japan Research Centre was established in the National University including languages, cultural exchanges covering several domains i.e. literatures, performing arts.

Annual cultural exchange programme to showcase each country cultural products including cuisine, traditional dress, handicrafts, traditional souvenirs since 2007.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Stronger cooperation at the regional level and international level.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

n/a

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
Yes
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
International
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

Exchange and promotion culture between two people to better mutual understanding and stimulating the cultural products,

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 

Cultural events on various topics in both countries

❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT NATIONAL LEVEL

Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT NATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To achieve sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction while gradually transforming Lao PDR into a more open, strengthening the productivity and capacity of the cultural and creative industries and prioritizing the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Government of Lao PDR has long recognized the role of local culture, knowledge and skills as a means to create jobs and improve economic development. Culture is seen as the main foundation for sustainable development of the nation, leading to solidarity in the society and pushing the society to expand and integrate at the regional and international levels.

The evaluation of the 7th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2011-2015) acknowledged how local skills, together with new techniques, have shifted many families in the bordered and priority areas of the country from slash-and-burn rice cultivation to commercial production, to secure permanent jobs as well as ensure improved livelihoods. Handicrafts sector is fast developing, with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum and currently valued about 2,850 billion kip (equivalent 340,000,000 US$), with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum. Lao handicraft products are popular domestically and exported to Japan, the EU and the US. Eco- and cultural tourism has been promoted through community-based tourism initiatives, bringing in a revenue of approximately 725,000,000 US$ in 2015. The ‘one village one product’ approach has been enacted to promote local and cultural resources for sustainable development.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

- Lao handicraft products have developed with inheritance value for each local area and high quality, with high domestic and foreign market demand;

- Tourism has developed based on the application of natural, cultural and historic inheritance potential in an effective and sustainable manner through participation of the people, and transformed into a revenue generating sector of the country to create employment and income for the local population

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
National government (inter-ministerial)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget (central and local), secured on an annual basis

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The Socio-Economic Development Plans are developed every five years and evaluated at the end of each period. The 7th plan was developed for the 2011-2015 period, the results of its implementation were reviewed while preparing for the 8th plan (2016-2020). The evaluation acknowledged an improvement in the socio-economic development, with contribution from the culture sector.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 
    • The growth rate in the handicrafts and tourism sectors
❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

1. Integrating culture in Five-Year National Socio Economic Development Plans

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To achieve sustainable economic growth and poverty reduction while gradually transforming Lao PDR into a more open, strengthening the productivity and capacity of the cultural and creative industries and prioritizing the achievements of the Sustainable Development Goals.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
legislative
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

The Government of Lao PDR has long recognized the role of local culture, knowledge and skills as a means to create jobs and improve economic development. Culture is seen as the main foundation for sustainable development of the nation, leading to solidarity in the society and pushing the society to expand and integrate at the regional and international levels.

The evaluation of the 7th Five-Year National Socio-Economic Development Plan (2011-2015) acknowledged how local skills, together with new techniques, have shifted many families in the bordered and priority areas of the country from slash-and-burn rice cultivation to commercial production, to secure permanent jobs as well as ensure improved livelihoods. Handicrafts sector is fast developing, with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum and currently valued about 2,850 billion kip (equivalent 340,000,000 US$), with a growth rate of 15 percent per annum. Lao handicraft products are popular domestically and exported to Japan, the EU and the US. Eco- and cultural tourism has been promoted through community-based tourism initiatives, bringing in a revenue of approximately 725,000,000 US$ in 2015. The ‘one village one product’ approach has been enacted to promote local and cultural resources for sustainable development.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 
  • Lao handicraft products have developed with inheritance value for each local area and high quality, with high domestic and foreign market demand;
  •  Tourism has developed based on the application of natural, cultural and historic inheritance potential in an effective and sustainable manner through participation of the people, and transformed into a revenue generating sector of the country to create employment and income for the local population
f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
National government (inter-ministerial)
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget (central and local), secured on an annual basis

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The Socio-Economic Development Plans are developed every five years and evaluated at the end of each period. The 7th plan was developed for the 2011-2015 period, the results of its implementation were reviewed while preparing for the 8th plan (2016-2020). The evaluation acknowledged an improvement in the socio-economic development, with contribution from the culture sector.

i.3 Which indicators were used to determine impact?: 
    • The growth rate in the handicrafts and tourism sectors
❭ INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

2. Promotion of traditional medicines and herbal remedies

Context of the measure: 
INTEGRATION OF CULTURE IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT - AT INTERNATIONAL LEVEL
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

Promoting local knowledge related to plants and medicines in order to safeguard local knowledge while providing quality and culturally-appropriate health services.

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
regulatory
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Traditional medicines have always played a key role in the health care practices of Lao populations. The Government encourages the use of traditional medicines and herbal remedies, especially in rural areas where there are few or no hospitals and medical clinics.

The Law on Drugs and Medical Products (established in 2000, amended in 2011) officially recognizes the role of traditional medicines. Article 4 of the law stipulates that “the State promotes the integration of the use between modern drugs and traditional medicines effectively and safely in disease prevention and treatment and encourages the integration, use and development of traditional medicines in the health service system”. Article 5 requires that the “produce and use of drugs and medical products” are carried out “in junction with protection of environment and ensure the sustainability of medicinal natural resources”.

The University of Health Sciences is implementing a 5-year plan to create a Bachelor program on Traditional Medicines. There is also a proposal for non-formal training for traditional healers but currently not implemented due to lack of funds.

So far, 12,500 species of medicinal plants have been identified, of which 2000 are properly documented by the Institute of Traditional Medicines. These include information on the plants and their uses, including extraction and production. The major problem however is the lack of standardisation and accredited laboratories for assessing traditional medicines. An MOU has been signed between the Governments of Lao PDR and China for the development of standards and assessment and establishment of testing facilities.

The Food and Drugs Department works closely with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry in relations to forest products. So far one natural product, ’Chandai’, has been certified and used for blood circulation.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Increased access to quality traditional health services and remedies.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the Ministry of Industries and Commerce, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and Ministry of Natural Resources
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

Government budget, together with direct investment from private sector companies that involve in product development

g. Name of NGOs and/or private companies engaged in the implementation of the measure, if any: 
Name: 
n/a
h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
No
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
No
❭ EMERGING TRANSVERSAL ISSUES: Resolution 5.CP 9b

1. Enhancing public service media in Lao PDR

Context of the measure: 
EMERGING TRANSVERSAL ISSUES: Resolution 5.CP 9b
b. Key objectives of the measure: 

To improve the accessibility to quality public programs in Lao PDR

c. What is: 
c.1. the scope of the measure: 
National
c.2. the nature of the measure: 
institutional
c.3. the main feature of the measure: 

Lao PDR has a national strategy to move from analogue to digital by 2025. In line with this, the technology used in the media sector is being upgraded through both national resources and international support. These measures are complemented by exchange of media personnel with other countries.

d. Does it specifically target individuals and/or social groups as defined in Article 7 of the Convention?: 
No
e. What are the results expected through the implementation of the measure?: 

Lao citizens will have received more updated and quality media content, available in Lao, ethnic minorities’ and foreign languages.

f.1 Name of agency responsible for the implementation of the measure: 
Department of Mass Media, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism
Ministry of Post and Telecommunication
f.2 Financial resources allocated to implement the measure: 

State budget together with private sector investment

h. Was this measure introduced or revised in order to: 
h.1. Implement the provisions of the Convention?: 
No
h.2. Support/nurture policy discussion inspired by the Convention?: 
No
h.3. Other reasons unrelated to the Convention?: 
Yes
i. Has the implementation of the measure been evaluated?: 
Yes
i.1 At what level the evaluation was conducted?: 
National
i.2 What were the main conclusions?: 

The evaluation was done as part of the review of the 7th Socio-Economic Development Plan which ended in 2015. The transition to digital technology (currently 50% realized) has led to the improvement of the communication sector and expanded the mass media system quantitatively and qualitatively. The land-based transmission includes 63 radio stations, covering 95 percent of the country and delivering to the public a total of 700 hours per day, in the languages of Lao, Hmong, Khamou, French, English, Khmer, Thai, Vietnamese and Chinese. Programs in ethnic languages - Khamou and Hmong are broadcasted 3 times a day (in total 2 hours for each language) on frequencies AM  6130 KHz and on FM 94.3 MHz; 95 MHz ; 97.3 MHz and  103.7 MHz, delivering programs on news, information and success stories, music and other types of entertainment such as dramas.

 

The TV media have also developed its quality and improved the broadcast content. Currently there are 37 TV stations (29 of which are public), both video and audio broadcasting covers 80 percent of the country’s area, while satellite covers 100 percent of the country’s area. Local stations are also active and broadcast at least 2-3 hours a day of locally produced programs. The print media have expanded quantitatively and qualitatively. At present, there are 127 media publication, including 27 newspapers (11 of which are daily). Radio broadcast speakers have been installed in various villages across the country, including 4,635 targeted villages, accounting for over 50 percent of the total villages.