While realizing the priority international investment project of EBA ‘Prime Business Destinations’ the main aim of which is to determine territories with the favourable business and investment climate to provide representation and promotion to EBA licensed companies at the advantageous territories an EBA delegation paid an official visit to Lao People's Democratic Republic, accepting the official invitation from the undoubted leader of this region, Phongsavanh Group of Companies.
This destination was chosen not by coincidence. Robust economic growth, averaging over 7% since 2006, has resulted in a halving of poverty since 1992 and impressive gains across a range of other social and economic indicators. Much of this progress can be attributed to large increases in foreign direct investment (FDI), and the transformation of the Lao PDR into a provider of natural resources in the region, mainly energy, minerals, timber, and cash crops. Regarding the external sector, the open-door policy has enhanced Laotian economic integration with both the regional and global economy. Consequently, trade and FDI have expanded significantly. The membership to the ASEAN in 1997 was a critical turning point in intensifying Laosʼ integration with the regional economy.
Prof. Od Phongsavanh, President, Chairman of Honorary Advisory Committee of Phongsavanh Group of Companies, warmly welcomed the EBA delegation in his official residence in Vientiane. During bilateral negotiations, a whole range of issues were discussed relating to further cooperation between Europe Business Assembly, Oxford and Phongsavanh Group of Companies. In the framework of the dialogue Prof Dr. Od Phongsavanh was proposed to represent interests of Lao business in this region, becoming the Honorary Ambassador of EBA.
The Phongsavanh Group is a leading group of company in the Lao PDR with successful enterprises in international trading, timber, hospitality, petroleum trading, telecommunications and security products.
Phongsavanh Group is a private company that has been successful in multiple sectors. Over 30 years ago, Prof. Od Phongsavanh, Chairman of Phongsavanh Group, has developed commerce within the country in business sectors such as Petroleum trading, Savanh Hung Heuang Export – Import Co., Ltd., purchasing forestry and lumber to exports and importing consumer goods to provide people in the province of Savannakhet.
During the 1980 he began logging operations, creating several sawmills, and producing tens of thousands of cubic meters of finished lumber products per year, worth several million US dollars as exports to the countries of the southeast region such as Thailand, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam, Cambodia and others.
In 1995, he established the Phongsavanh company as the main provider of telecommunications equipment in the Vientiane capital to dealers of radio communications brands such as Icon, Panasonic, Phillips and Motorola in the Lao PDR.
Then, between the years 1997 and 2001 he established Phaiboun trading export - import company (sole) ltd. Thongsavanh export – import company (sole) limited, Phongsavanh hotel, and Phongsavanh construction company limited, under name of the Phongsavanh Group.
The Group has built an excellent reputation in the market and strong relations with government agencies and leading MNC companies such as Motorola, Kenwood, Fujitel, and Philips. Under the dynamic leadership of its founder, Mr. Od Phongsavanh, the Phongsavanh Group plans to engage in activities using high technology to deliver better products and services to an emerging middle class and foreign and domestic companies in Laos.
The Phongsavanh Group has received a license to set up the first privately owned bank in the Lao PDR and deposited the minimum capital reserve requirement of US$2.5m well in advance of the Bank of Lao PDR. The Bank has a registered capital of US$10m. The shareholders wish to create a bank that offers excellent service to the individuals, small companies, large corporate customers, and government agencies in Laos.
As the part of the official visit, the EBA delegation met with the Management Board of Phongsavanh Bank, communicating with Mr.Phaiboun Phongsavanh, deputy Managing Director of Phongsavanh Bank Limited, and carried out negotiations with Mr.Sonexay Silaphet, Group Chief Finance Officer of The Petroleum Trading Lao Public Company (PetroTrade), that is a part of Phongsavanh Group of Companies, that was founded with the vision of delivering quality oil at a fair price to all areas for better quality of life. This inspiration came from the first-hand experiences of the founder who perceived that access to fuel supply in remote areas is usually a problem, creating significant economic damage.
EBA always supports its loyal community members by presenting and promoting the companies’ and territories’ achievements and expanding the licensed leading regional companies to new markets in the most investment attractive dynamically developing locations.
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