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WFP Renews Commitment To Support Lao PDR On Journey To Middle Income Country Status

VIENTIANE – The Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) today signed an agreement in support of WFP’s new five-year programme, which is designed to help the Government of Lao PDR achieve the Sustainable Development Goal targets, as well as Middle Income Country status.

“WFP’s new Country Strategic Plan has been formulated with wide participation of different stakeholders in Lao PDR, and it is in alignment with our own National Socio-Economic Development Plan and other key policies,” said Dr Kikeo Chanthaboury, Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment. “The new programme will bring great benefits to the development of Lao PDR.”

“Every day, step by step, Lao PDR is moving towards food and nutrition security for all, and towards Middle Income Country status. WFP will be with you on that journey, supporting the Government and communities to find national solutions to national challenges,” said Sarah Gordon-Gibson, WFP Country Director and Representative.

Dr Kikeo Chanthaboury explained that the four outcomes of the Country Strategic Plan, or CSP, will directly contribute to Outcomes 2 and 3 of the National Socio-Economic Development Plan (8th NSEDP 2016-2020), and are also related to the Human Assets Index (HAI) and Economic Vulnerability Index (EVI) which are key indicators for graduating from Least Developed Country status by 2020.

Building on 17 years of presence in Lao PDR, the CSP – which runs from 2017 until 2021 – is part of a broader vision that aims for the Government and communities to independently own, manage and implement food and nutrition security programmes by 2030.

“This shift is very much in accordance with the principles of the 2015 Vientiane Declaration on Partnership for Effective Development Cooperation, which called for greater country ownership, alignment, and inclusive partnerships for development results,” said Dr Kikeo Chanthaboury.

The CSP focuses on tackling key challenges identified in the Strategic Review on Food and Nutrition Security, which was carried out last year by an independent team under the leadership of MPI. In an unprecedented ‘whole-of-society’ approach, WFP held extensive consultations with stakeholders at national and sub-national levels to help shape the CSP. The programme will focus on food insecurity, malnutrition, low resilience to climate change, and the governance structure needed to address these priorities.  

The CSP was approved by WFP’s Executive Board in February 2017, in the presence of Dr Chanthaboury, who had travelled to WFP’s headquarters in Rome, Italy, to express the Government’s endorsement of the plan.

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WFP is the world's leading humanitarian agency fighting hunger worldwide, delivering food assistance in emergencies and working with communities to improve nutrition and build resilience. Each year, WFP assists some 80 million people in around 80 countries.
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For more information please contact:
Sarah Gordon-Gibson, Country Director and Representative, WFP/Vientiane, tel. +856 21 330300, sarah.gordon-gibson@wfp,org
Morakot Vongxay, Director of the United Nations Division, Department of International Cooperation, Ministry of Planning and Investment, Tel: 856-21-222214, k_vongxay@hotmail.com