Lao exports to Cambodia on the rise

VIENTIANE  (Vientiane Times/ANN) - Lao exports to Cambodia are expected to reach US$19.4 million for 2017 after recording US$11.8 million in the first six months of the year, a 59.7 per cent increase compared to the same period last year.

Vehicle parts, electricity and coffee beans were the top three income earners, according to a summary report by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

Vehicle parts have been a key driver of Lao export growth to Cambodia with US$7.75 million shipped last year compared to just over US$900,000 in 2013.

Most outstandingly, the first six months of this year alone saw a record over US$11.8 million in total exports to the southern neighbour.

Meanwhile, Cambodian exports to Laos for the first six months of this year stood at over US$400,000 with livestock, cotton and motorbikes being the biggest three products.

The two nations have long been working hard to promote investment and trade cooperation through construction of the new international border checkpoint crossing Laos’ southern Khong district in Champassak province to Stung Treng province of Cambodia.

In 2015, bilateral trade value between the neighbouring provinces reached over US$24.5 million but last year’s trade value has yet to be made public.

Last year, two-way trade between the two countries was not made public, but total investments in Laos by Cambodia were valued at about US$84 million, according to a Cambodian media report.

In the investment sector, Acleda Bank began establishing branches in Laos in 2008 and its operations have witnessed positive results in line with Lao economic growth.

This growth has fuelled the need for local people to access finance to run their own enterprises, agro-businesses and small start-ups which Acleda Bank has assisted with.

Meanwhile, Laos’ overall exports this year  are set to reach over US$4.45 billion, after an increase of 13.2 percent (over US$2.46 billion) in the first six months of this year.

Imports are expected to reach over US$4.48 billion, after recording over US$2.24 billion or a 6.6 percent increase for the first six months of this year.

 At the same time, Laos’ trade surplus is expected to exceed US$22.78 million for 2017 with the total combined value of imports and exports exceeding US$8.94 billion, according to a report from the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.

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