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SMU Libraries

Understanding LAOS: Business & Economics

This guide provides useful information and links to resources on Laos.

At A Glance


The following information have been carefully selected for your reference. Some resources may have bias perspectives. Please approach the SMU Libraries ( ) should you have any doubts or need clarifications.


Check out this video describing Laos over the last decade and how it has experienced strong economic growth. But, was this growth inclusive? And is it sustainable? Discover Laos' investment potentials and opportunities in non-natural resource sector. The government of Laos is promoting quality investment which contributes to poverty eradication, development of human capital and impact on the environment, that will support a diversified economy and provide a fair distribution of benefits to the population.


This section explores the various aspects of doing business in Laos.

This video shows the impact when Laos opened its doors to tourism -- it wasn't prepared for the problems that followed. As the government cracks down on party culture, businesses dependent on tourism are worried about their livelihoods.

Business Law

Golden Triangle

Find out how the Golden Triangle Special Economic Zone (GT SEZ) in Bokeo Province, Laos, has effectively become a hub for trade in illegal wildlife products and parts of endangered species including tigers, elephants, rhinos, bears, pangolins and reptiles.

Economics & Infrastructure

This section explores the economics and infrastructure in Laos.

The economy of Laos is primarily agricultural and since the late 20th century has remained heavily dependent on foreign aid and investment.

By 1980, however, the government had begun to pursue more pragmatic development policies, and in 1986 it introduced market-oriented reforms. Since then, private and state enterprises have operated side-by-side, and foreign investments have been encouraged.

This video interviews Kham, the owner of rice noodle shop located in Ban Mom Village in Bokeo Province, northern part of Laos near the Golden Triangle.

2016 marks the fifth anniversary of the Joint Patrol and Law Enforcement initiative on the Mekong River. With improved security, her businesses are growing and become prosperous along the Mekong River.


This section explores the accounting aspect in Laos.

Additional Resources

Ganesan Kolandevelu, Partner in Charge, KPMG in Laos​, giving some advice in doing business in Laos.

The use of electronic resources must comply with the Appropriate Use of Electronic Resources Policy and Singapore Management University Acceptable Use Policy