International Trade and Human Development


The third NHDR analyzes international trade and human development. Increasing international trade can benefit the economy and people of Lao PDR. But the benefits will depend on the nature and terms of trade, on government policy, and on the policies of trading partners. A small open economy is also vulnerable to external shocks that threaten human development.

The report analyzes trade in goods, trade in services, and transit trade. There there is also some analysis of ‘informal trade,” including informal agricultural exports, and “export” of migrant Lao workers to Thailand. The report also analyzes the impacts of international trade on employment, production, poverty, income, consumption, and the environment, impacts on gender, ethnic minorities, and culture.

Trade is analyzed in the context of the “New Economic Mechanism,” the national development plan, and the NGPES, including national objectives to become land-linked not landlocked, to meet the MDGs in 2015, and “graduate” from LDC status in 2020.

Globalization and Economic Integration