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NA approves economic policies, laws in closing session

The 10th ordinary session of the National Assembly (NA)’s 8th legislature wrapped up on Tuesday after approving economic recovery policies and five laws.
During the three-week session, members debated measures presented by the government to overcome economic difficulties and the debt burden, which have been exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Speaking at the closing ceremony, NA President Mrs Pany Yathortou outlined the achievements of the session, which opened on October 27.

“We have spent four days discussing the government’s socio-economic development plan and I congratulate the government on its efforts to prevent a second wave of Covid-19,” she said.
However, Assembly members urged the government to do more to address economic issues and further assist people affected by severe flooding in central and southern parts of the country.
The lawmakers approved reports on the implementation of this year’s socio-economic development plan, the budget for 2020, and plans for 2021.
The session discussed a draft of the 9th five-year socio-economic development plan for 2021-25 before approving urban planning for Vientiane.
Several reports were tabled for debate including one on the audit of the state budget and findings of the Government Inspection Authority’s audits for the 2018, 2013-2014 and 2015-2016 fiscal years.
Four new laws on diplomatic rankings, youth, international cooperation in the fields of crime and higher education were approved. The Assembly also endorsed an amendment to the state auditing law.
The 10th session is the last of the Assembly’s 8th legislature. The Election Committee, chaired by Mrs Pany Yathortou, was asked to be responsible for the election of Assembly members for the 9th legislature next year.
The 9th legislature will debate and approve laws as well as make decisions on fundamental issues from 2021 to 2025. 
The People’s Supreme Prosecutor and People’s Supreme Court also reported on their performances in 2020 and their plans for 2021.
The Lao Front for National Development commented on the performance of the NA, urging parliament to further push the government to tackle road accidents and drug use and trafficking, which are on the rise.
This year, the economy has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic and is projected to grow by 3.3 percent. However, the inflation rate averaged 5.72 percent over the past nine months.
The Assembly urged the government to better regulate places of entertainment to ensure their operations are in line with the law and to address the social ills caused by such places.
The government was asked to boost agricultural production for export purposes while minimising imports. The government was also advised to improve the skills of the workforce and create more job opportunities for Lao people, especially for those who had returned from Thailand as a result of the Covid-19 outbreak.
The closing ceremony of the National Assembly was attended by President Bounnhang Vorachit, Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith and other cabinet members.


By Times Reporters
(Latest Update
November 18,

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