Laos, which is located in the inland part of the Indochina Peninsula, has seen steady economic growth in recent years. However, it is still among the least developed countries due to factors such as geography, topography, population, and human resources.
In response, the Government of Lao PDR has formulated the 8th National Socio-Economic Development Plan (NSEDP) (2016-2020) and is working on various policies to achieve balanced and sustainable development. Based on the 8th NSEDP and "The Japan-Lao PDR Joint Development Cooperation Plan for the Sustainable Development of Lao PDR" that was agreed upon in September 2016, JICA has set three pillars of cooperation; 1) strengthening connectivity with countries in the region on the tangible and intangible fronts; 2) Develop the industrial human resources in order to diversify Lao PDR's industries and enhance their competitiveness; 3) Rectify disparity through balanced urban and regional development that takes environmental and cultural preservation into account. In order to steadily implement these three pillars, JICA is also tackling cross-sectoral issues such as macroeconomic and fiscal stabilization, promotion of the rule of law, enhancement of administrative capabilities, and removal of unexploded ordnance.