Asean Business Awards Laos promote outstanding entrepreneurs

VIENTIANE (Vientiane Times/ANN) - The 18 winners of the Asean Business Awards (ABA) Laos 2019 were officially acknowledged as talented economic players with great potential for domestic business expansion as well as within the Asean business community.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Mr Somdy Duangdy, Minister of Industry and Commerce Mrs Khemmani Pholsena, and German Ambassador to Laos Mr Jens Peter Lütkenherm attended the awards presentation ceremony held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel on Friday.

The ceremony began with a speech by Asean Business Advisory Council Member of Laos and Vice President of the Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Thanongsinh Kanlagna.

He briefed the audience about the Asean Business Awards (ABA) Laos, which was initially co-hosted by LNCCI and other sponsors in 2016 when Laos held the chair of Asean.

“ABA Laos aims to recognise outstanding Lao businesses and send them as experts to gain knowledge in doing business in the Asean Economic Community. The Lao awardees will have a chance to apply for the Asean regional awards to be hosted in Thailand next month,” he said.

Mr Thanongsinh said the project would support and encourage domestic products and diversified brandings of products with superior quality. It will also create employment for locals and contribute to the country’s Gross Domestic Product.

Addressing the ABAL Dinner 2019, Minister of Industry and Commerce Mrs Khemmani Pholsena said the government congratulated the private sector on its achievements and would continue to remove unnecessary barriers and promote a business-friendly environment.

“The public and private sectors will work together alongside implementing Prime Minister’s Order No. 2 to improve the nation’s Ease of Doing Business ranking and continue to integrate with regional business networks,” she said.

Ambassador Lütkenherm shared his congratulatory toast with the awardees and praised them for their achievements and recognition by the Asean Business Awards Laos.

“ABA Laos rewards the achievements of Lao businesses and celebrates their important contributions to the growth of the nation. This award is a stepping stone towards competing at the Asean level. The German government is proud to support the ABAL Laos 2019 together with our RELATED project,” he said.

The German ambassador said his embassy held regular discussions with the European Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Delegations of the German and European Private Sector in the region to promote Laos as an emerging business and investment destination in Southeast Asia.

The Regional Economic Integration of Laos into Asean, Trade and Entrepreneurship Development (RELATED) project of the Lao-German Development Cooperation supports the Asean Business Awards.

Amongst the 18 winners of the ABAL 2019 awards, 16 companies were awarded in the categories listed below:

Laos Priority Integration Sector Excellence Awards are for food & beverage, agri-based/agricultural, tourism, handicraft and wholesale and retail businesses.

SME Excellence Awards are for growth, employment, innovation and corporate social responsibility.

Special Awards are for young and women entrepreneurs, Friends of Laos, family businesses, sustainable social enterprise, green enterprise and start-up driven enterprises.

The Chamber began encouraging entrepreneurs and companies to submit entries in June and made its selections according to the set conditions and standards.

All winners of the ABA Laos awards are encouraged by the organisers, along with other Lao companies, to submit their entries for the regional competition in Thailand this November.

Launched in April 2007 by the Asean Business Advisory Council (Asean BAC) to mark the 40th anniversary of Asean, the Asean Business Awards seek to give recognition to the most outstanding companies that have made a significant contribution to the region’s economic growth and prosperity.

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