Southeast Asia

Sum of Measures 1—5 (Total Package)

Total Package in USD Million: 30.35
% of GDP (2019): 0.16%
% of Regional Total Package: 0.01%
Package Per Capita in USD: 4.30
Note: Measures 9 and 10 are added to the sum of Measures 1-5.
Measure Amount (Local) Amount (USD) Details Update Source
01 - Liquidity Support info_outline
01A - Short-term lending info_outline
01B - Support policies for short-term lending info_outline

No amount/estimate: March 20, The Bank of Lao P.D.R. (BOL) announced a reduction in the reserve requirements, from 10% to 8% on foreign exchange, and from 5% to 4% on local currency, effective on April 2.

01C - Forex operations info_outline

No amount/estimate: April, The Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) has a managed exchange rate (crawl-like arrangement). Under this arrangement, the exchange rate has depreciated. No new balance of payment or capital control measures have been adopted.

02 - Credit creation info_outline LAK200,000,000,000 USD22,483,218
02A - Financial sector lending/funding info_outline LAK200,000,000,000 USD22,483,218

As of September 10, BOL has made available LAK200 billion for low interest rate SMEs loans through commercial banks and is preparing to allocate LAK1,800 billion as low interest bank loans for post-COVID-19 economic and business recovery [update].

02B - Support policies for long-term lending info_outline

No amount/estimate: (i) March 26, BOL issued a new credit policy for those impacted, asking banks and financial institutions to restructure loans and provide new loans to businesses affected by the outbreak. Under this policy, banks and financial institutions that implement debt restructuring and new loan provisions will benefit from regulatory forbearance on loan classification and provisioning; and (ii) March 30, BOL cut its policy rate from 4% to 3% for 1-week loans; from 5% to 4% for 1–2 week loans; and from 10% to 9% for 2-week to 1-year loans.

02C - Loan guarantees
03 - Direct long-term lending info_outline
03A - Long-term lending info_outline
03B - Forbearance
04 - Equity support info_outline
05 - Government support to income/revenue LAK70,000,000,000 USD7,869,126
05A - Health LAK30,000,000,000 USD3,372,483

May, LAK30 billion has been allocated for prevention and control. As of July 1, an additional budget request of LAK23.98 billion for rapid procurement of protective and medical equipment from State Budget is under process.

05B - Non-health LAK40,000,000,000 USD4,496,644

No amount/estimate: April, Recent mitigation policies include (i) income tax exemption for both civil servants and employees of the private sector with income less than LAK5 million per month for 3 months, (ii) profit tax exemption for microenterprises with annual income between LAK50–LAK400 million for 3 months, (iii) duty fee exemption for imports of goods to be used toward the outbreak, (iv) deferring tax collection from tourism-related businesses for 3 months, (v) postponing mandatory contribution to social security by affected businesses for 3 months, and (vi) extending the submission of the 2019 financial report (annual tax filing) by 1 month and road tax payment by 3 months; and (vii) May, The government has agreed with an allowance of LAK500,000 per worker who currently participates in the Social Security Scheme. Of the 170,000 members, close to 80,000 will benefit from this scheme through June (Note that the estimated amount is LAK40 billion).

06 - Budget reallocation info_outline
07 - Central bank financing government
07A - Direct lending & reserve drawdown
07B - Secondary purchase: government securities
08 - International Assistance Received LAK604,657,189,633 USD67,973,197
08A - Swaps info_outline
08B - International loans/grants LAK604,657,189,633 USD67,973,197
08B1 - Asian Development Bank LAK203,974,360,952 USD22,930,000

(i) January 27, USD0.60 million under the Greater Mekong Subregion Health Security Project. As of June 8, the amount increased to USD0.86 million; (ii) February 7, USD0.34 million under the Strengthening Regional Health Cooperation in the Greater Mekong Subregion-Additional Financing; (iii) April 24, USD0.75 million under the Policy Advice for COVID-19 Economic Recovery in Southeast Asia project; (iv) May 17, USD1.03 million is the estimated support under TA 9950-REG: Regional Support to Address the Outbreak of COVID-19 and Potential Outbreaks of Other Communicable Diseases. As of July 13, the estimated support amounted to USD0.93 million; (v) May 22, USD20 million under the Greater Mekong Subregion Health Security Project (Additional Financing); (vi) August 10, USD0.05 million under the Sustaining the Gains of the Regional Cooperation in the Greater Mekong Subregion (Additional Financing) Project.

08B2 - Other LAK400,682,828,681 USD45,043,197

(i) April 7, The World Bank’s Regional Vice-Presidency of the East Asia and Pacific Region approved USD18 million for the Lao PDR to help the country respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Lao PDR COVID-19 Response Project supports preparedness and emergency response activities, including infection prevention and control, case detection and contact tracing, case management and risk communication. It also supports the upgrade of surveillance capacity and the skills of health-care workers; (ii) May, USD1 million under the United Nations (UN) COVID-19 Response and Recovery Multi-Partner Trust Fund (COVID-19 MPTF); (iii) May 20, The United States through the US Agency for International Development will provide health assistance amounting to USD4.4 million; (iv) May 22, The United States has committed an additional USD3.17 million in new funding support, provided through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (USCDC), for prevention, preparedness, and response activities in response to COVID-19 in Lao PDR; (v) June 5, The Japanese government has provided grant aid worth over LAK123 billion (JPY1.5 billion) for the purchase of medical equipment to support Lao PDRs’ efforts to cope with a further outbreak of COVID-19. An Exchange of Notes for the grant aid project entitled “Economic and Social Development Progamme” was signed at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Vientiane; (vi) August 20, The European Union has provided EUR2.5 million for Lao PDR under the Civil Society Action to Prevent and Mitigate COVID-19 project; (vii) As of September 16, Germany will provide about EUR1.7 million through an International Labour Organization (ILO) program to help the garment workers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic [update].

09 - International Assistance Provided
09A - Swaps info_outline
09B - International loans/grants
10 - No breakdown

No amount/estimate: (i) April, A proposed 13-measure economic stimulus package has been endorsed by the cabinet. Measures include establishing a separate task force to address the economic impact of COVID-19; and (ii) May, A new electricity tariff, to ensure supply of electricity, in effect from May 1, 2020 through December 31, 2025, has been approved. Extra efforts to ensure revenue collections through automated platforms and inspections targeting at stockpiling of essential goods are being considered.

11 - Other Economic Measures

(i) As of August, Cuts in administrative expenses by at least 30% of the annual budget for ministries and central organizations and 10% for local authorities have been approved and intentions to cut unnecessary spending in proportion to revenue shortfall have been signaled; (ii) The Taskforce Committee has launched a fundraising campaign from the public (as of June 1, about LAK17.5 billion in cash and LAK85.5 billion in kind have been raised.

12 - Non-Economic Measures

(i) April: (a) Border checkpoints, schools, and entertainment venues remain closed; (b) Price control of essential goods is still in place; and (c) The Taskforce Committee for COVID-19 Epidemic Prevention, Control and Response is monitoring latest developments and coordinates the authorities’ response. A separate Taskforce Committee and its seven working groups are in place to address the economic impact of the crisis; (ii) May 4: (a) A nationwide lockdown has been partially lifted. The new loosened measures allow the reopening of public offices and some private sector businesses and is expected to last until May 17; (b) Restaurants, hotels, resorts, guesthouses, coffee shops, barbershops, beauty salons as well as wholesale and retail outlets can resume their businesses, however, large-scale manufacturing plants and investment projects with large number of employees must abide by strict preventative measures introduced by the National Taskforce; and (c) Travel and public transport within each province are now permitted but inter-provincial travel and public transport including air transport and large gatherings are still suspended and banned; (iii) May 18: (a) The new loosened measures allow public offices and businesses to resume and are expected to last until June 1; (b) Restaurants, food vendors, retail and wholesale outlets, fresh markets, supermarkets, personal care services as well as development projects, companies and factories are also permitted to resume operations, but must abide by strict preventative measures introduced by the National Taskforce; (c) In country travel and public transport are now permitted; (d) Some classes at primary, lower and upper secondary schools can resume on May 18 while all others are slated to open on June 2; (e) All indoor and outdoor sporting activities are now permitted; (f) Border checkpoints, night markets, and entertainment venues remain closed; (g) Price control of essential goods is still in place; (iv) June 10, the government announced that the last patient has fully recovered and discharged from hospital. Consequently: (a) Most businesses can resume activities, but night markets, eatery spots, cinemas, casinos must abide by strict preventative measures and practice social distancing; (b) In-country travel and public transport are fully operational; (c) All schools have resumed but must ensure hygiene and distancing practices; (d) All indoor and outdoor sporting activities are now permitted and audiences are allowed, however, entertainment venues remain closed; (e) With the exception of certain checkpoints allowed by the government, border checkpoints for individuals and transportation of goods, will remain closed as will all international borders. However, foreign businessmen, investors, workers for large investment projects as well as diplomats and foreign experts with proper medical certification and authorization can enter the country but have to be quarantined for 14 days; (f) Large gatherings, including for traditional ceremonies and celebrations are now allowed; and (g) Price control of essential goods is still in place; (v) August 1-31, Shuttle flights will be suspended, and the prevention measures will be continuously imposed: (a) Closure of entertainment venues, karaoke, and gaming shops; (b) Closure of traditional and local border checkpoints, except those permitted by the government for goods transport. International checkpoints remain closed for regular travellers, except essential crossings for Lao and foreign nationals who are permitted by the task force committee. Transportation of goods via the international checkpoints is allowed as normal; (c) Suspending the issuing of tourist or visiting visas for those travelling from or transiting via countries where there is COVID-19 outbreak. Foreign diplomats, the staff of international organizations, experts, investors, business people, technical personnel, and workers deemed essential to take up missions in Lao PDR can enter the country upon approval by the task force committee.