News from Laos



Baseline Study Lao PDR Published

As part of FLEGT Asia's information collection role, a number of forest governance, markets and trade Baseline Studies have been carried out in the region. The second one, undertaken by Forest Trends, has just been published: Baseline Study 2, Lao PDR: Overview of Forest Governance, Markets and Trade.

  • Some of the main findings of this study include:
  • "Conversion timber" is the predominant source of timber in Laos
  • Timber sales account for roughly 12% of overall government revenue (2006)
  • Laos' forest product export markets are dominated by Vietnam and Thailand
  • Laos' main export markets in turn are significant re-exporters of manufactured forest products, to countries which increasingly require legal verification
  • Strong historical, political and market links with Vietnam
  • Poor quality of harvesting and trade data
  • Unclear definition of legality and complex permitting requirements
  • Forest certification in Laos is limited but has potential
  • Uncertainty about the status of border delineation and management planning for the majority of the 51 legal Production Forest Areas (PFA)
  • Relative autonomy of provincial actors
  • Community land tenure and forest zoning remain contested and unclarified
  • Limited but growing room for civil society involvement

The full report can be found here [English language] and here [Lao language].

Earlier publications in this series include:
Baseline Study 1, China [English] [Chinese
Timber Trade Flow Maps of China and the Mekong Region [English]