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FAO in Laos

Our Office

The FAO Representation in Lao PDR was established in Vientiane in 1980, and the Organization has maintained its main office at the current location since then. FAO continues to work with a wide range of governmental agencies, including especially the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Environment, with civil society, and with the private sector. Its work in Lao PDR has been supported by and delivered in collaboration with a wide variety of regional and international development partners.

Support to Policy and Strategy. Given the priority need to address the high rate of malnutrition, FAO supported development of the National Nutrition Policy and supported the revision of National Nutrition Strategy and Plan of Action for 2016-2025. FAO contributed to the Agricultural Development Strategy 2025, and to development of the country’s Strategic Action Plan on Rice and a Strategic Implementation Plan for Fisheries and Aquaculture. As Lao PDR changes from subsistence to market-oriented agriculture, FAO is supporting policy processes to develop a resilient agriculture sector adapted for market integration and climate change. FAO is guiding development of national Sanitary and Phytosanitary legislation. FAO supported development of the first National Agricultural Biodiversity Programme (NABP) in 2003, and its successor the NABP-2 in 2014, aimed at the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.

Data and Information. FAO has also provided assistance to Lao PDR to develop its capacity to produce and use reliable data and information in support of policy/decision-making and of effective management of the agriculture and rural development. FAO is supporting the strengthening of the agricultural statistics system, and has helped the government to complete sector assessments, surveys and studies on food security, rice, forest management, fisheries, and research institutions/systems. FAO supported the Government in the Lao Agricultural Census in 2010/11, and has co-produced several publications based on the Census data.

Farmers’ Livelihoods and Better Nutrition. FAO has provided training and technology to rural communities and service providers to improve the reliability and quality of production, to protect crops and animals from pests and diseases, to diversify production into more nutritious foods, and to connect producers to national and foreign markets. In particular, FAO has provided more than 20 years of support on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approaches through Farmer Field Schools (FFS), from which over a hundred thousand of Lao rice, vegetable and fruit farming families have benefitted. FAO has also supporting Lao farmers to become exporters of horticultural commodities to the Greater Mekong Subregion and beyond.

Resilience to Disasters and Emergencies. FAO has supported the government respond to natural disasters with assistance in the aftermath of various floods and droughts, including typhoon Ketsana in 2009. A major programme of support on climate change adaptation is in progress involving collaboration between the agriculture and the natural resources sectors, including development of early warning capability. FAO has continued to support the Government in its efforts for the prevention and control of animal diseases such as avian influenza for more than 10 years. FAO has also supported the development of capability to respond to the major outbreak of the Yellow-Spined Bamboo Locust that began in 2014.