Power lines from the 1070 MW Nam Theun 2 hydropower plant in Lao PDR. 95% of the power produced by the plant is exported to Thailand, and the rest are consumed locally. Photo by Ariel Javellana/ADB.

Lao PDR Ramps Up Electricity Exports to Viet Nam

The Government of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic is increasing its electricity exports generated from its hydropower projects to its neighbors in the Greater Mekong Subregion, including Viet Nam. Lao PDR and Viet Nam have signed MoUs targeting to export 8,148 MW from Lao PDR to Viet Nam by 2030. Lao PDR also signed contracts with Viet Nam Electricity (EVN) to implement 25 projects with a combined capacity of 2,180 megawatts.  

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Migrant worker operates an electric loom in a textile mill. ©ILO/Areeluck Phankhian via Flickr

Improved Labor Management Initiatives Aim to Attract More Migrant Workers to Thailand

Mr. Pairoj Chotikasathien, head of the Thai Labour Ministry’s employment department, shared that the Thai Cabinet has approved improved labor management measures to address the gap in migrant worker employment. These measures include (i) allowing documented workers to stay until February 2025; and (ii) allowing undocumented workers to register and work until the same date. 

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Site visit of Japanese investors to U-Tapao International Airport in September 2017. Photo via Flickr.

New Smart City Planned for Thailand’s Eastern Economic Corridor

Thailand will develop a new smart city in Bang Lamung district, Chon Buri, Thailand. The development is part of the country’s Eastern Economic Corridor (EEC) and will be located 15 kilometers from U-Tapao Airport. 

Mr. Kanit Sangsubhan, secretary-general of the EEC Office, estimates that the new smart city will draw 1.34 trillion baht's worth of investment over 10 years and create 200,000 new jobs. 

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49th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Tourism Working Group (TWG-49)

The Government of Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) with assistance of the Mekong Tourism Coordinating Office (MTCO) virtually convened the 49th Meeting of the Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) Tourism Working Group (TWG-49) on 12 May 2022. The meeting was attended by representatives of the National Tourism Organizations (NTOs) of the six GMS countries, MTCO, and the Asian Development Bank (ADB).


The Friendship bridge built with Australian funding and completed and opened in 1994, crossing the Mekong River and connecting Thailand to Laos. Photo by Jim Holmes / AusAID via Flickr. (CC BY 2.0)

Fifth Lao-Thai Friendship Bridge to Provide Shortest Route between Lao PDR, Thailand, and Viet Nam

The fifth friendship bridge between the Lao People‘s Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) and Thailand is set to further enhance Lao PDR’s connectivity with its neighbors in the Greater Mekong Subregion. It will link Borikhamxay province (Lao PDR) to Bueng Kan province (Thailand), becoming a vital road link between Laos, Thailand and Vietnam. Spanning over 150km, it promises to be the shortest connecting link between the three countries and opens another regional trade and transit route. 

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 A cruise ship in Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam. Photo by Bryan Lippincott (CC BY-ND 2.0)

ASEAN Tourism Ministers Make Plans to Gradually Reopen ASEAN Tourism    

The 25th Meeting of ASEAN Tourism Ministers held on 19 January 2022 in Sihanoukville, Cambodia, exchanged views on the way forward for the recovery of the region’s tourism industry. Bearing the theme “ASEAN – A Community of Peace and Shared Future,” the Meeting discussed the impact of COVID-19 on each ASEAN member state and emphasized the development of the tourism sector amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. 

 

Decline in Tourist Growth 

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