Australia is supporting inclusive economic growth and poverty reduction in Laos through a range of rural development activities.
Australia focuses its development assistance on rural and remote areas where poverty is concentrated. We support community-based aid investments that tackle key constraints to rural economic development and improve livelihoods and incomes for the rural poor. Our programs support small-scale enterprise growth, increase access to savings and micro-credit, help trial social protection approaches, clear unexploded ordnance (UXO), and provide community-based infrastructure.
Reflecting the 2015-16 budget, we reduced the size of some of our rural development investments and will not be renewing them once they conclude in 2017. However, we still expect to achieve significant development outcomes over the life of our aid investment plan before our rural development investments conclude, including on financial inclusion, household productivity and income and UXO clearance.
Read the Australia Laos Rural Development Delivery Strategy 2012-16
Poverty Reduction Fund Phase 2
$21 million, 2011-2017
Poverty is concentrated in rural and remote areas, where poor infrastructure and limited or no access to basic services and markets is a major obstacle to economic growth. Australia is supporting the Poverty Reduction Fund Phase II, a community-based construction initiative that is improving poor communities’ access to markets and essential services. Infrastructure support includes rural road access, water supply and sanitation, irrigation and dams and community markets.
Laos–Australia Rural Livelihoods Program
$36.9 million, 2012-2017
The Laos Australia Rural Livelihoods Program focuses on three closely complementary areas that underpin strategies to deliver economic security and resilience to poor families: income generation, social protection and financial inclusion. The Program aims to improve the economic security of poor people in rural Laos through a range of interventions, including activities to: clear arable land of unexploded ordnance, provide short-term cash and asset transfers to cover basic necessities and support household businesses (such as retail shops, food vending, livestock raising), and build financial services so that rural people can safely store their savings and access micro-credit to improve household productivity and income.