Laos SME centre to boost startup skills

Tech July 15, 2017 23:21

By Vientiane Times/ANN

VIENTIANE - Boutviseth College in collaboration with TMC Consultant Co., Ltd and Top Vision Enterprise Co., Ltd have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for conducting the Laos SME Development Centre at the college.

The MoU was signed by representatives of Boutviseth College and the two companies as cooperation partners in operating the small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) office.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Boutviseth College Chairman of the Board of Directors, Chansavath Boutviseth, said the college has produced many business graduates annually but they still lacked experience in running a business.

“This centre will be useful for those graduates from the college to take on additional advice after finishing the theory from their course, especially for the startups,” he said.

Chansavath Boutviseth, who is also Honourable Counsellor to the centre, went on to say that human resource development was a key driver for socio-economic development and growth of the Lao economy.

“We intend to produce more skilled labour in the field of SMEs to supply the demands of labour markets in the public and private sectors,”  Chansavath said. He added the centre would enable the young generation to cultivate skills in the hope of becoming more familiar with modern technology in business operations.

Currently, the government is focusing on human resource development, especially in the SME sector because it made a significant contribution to GDP annually as well as creating employment at the grassroots level.

According to recent data released by GIZ's Regional Economic Integration of Laos into Asean, Trade and Entrepreneurship Development (RELATED) Project, SMEs in Asean made up 96 per cent of all enterprises, an estimated 30 to 53 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 50 per cent of the manufacturing output.

Also, some 44 to 70 per cent of employment generation and 19 to 31 per cent of exports come from the SME sector.

In addition, 99 per cent of all enterprises in the Great Mekong Sub-region (GMS) are SMEs, which generate 20 per cent to 40 per cent of GDP and create 75 per cent to 90 per cent of jobs.  SME also account for 10 per cent to 15 per cent of exports from the GMS.

In Laos, SME make up 97 per cent of all enterprises and account for 16 per cent of GDP and 63 per cent of employment.

Lao National Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LNCCI) has also cooperated with domestic and international development partners to set up an SME Service Centre that focuses on short-term business management training courses.

This activity is designed to upgrade skills of local business operators, entrepreneurs and management staff of companies across the country.