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Officials up to speed for Roundtable meeting in Champassak

Source: Vientiane Times, 10 November 2017

Government officials and their development partners in charge of preparations for the 2017 Round Table Implementation Meeting to be held in Champassak province on November 22-23 met yesterday to assess the progress of their preparations.
The meeting was attended by more than 100 senior officials from line ministries, development partners and donors as well as foreign diplomats and representatives of non-governmental organisations.
They discussed the way forward with the chairs and co-chairs of the 10 Sector Working Groups.
The working groups relate to health, education, governance, infrastructure, mine action and unexploded ordnance, illicit drug control, agriculture and rural development, natural resource management and environment, macroeconomics, trade, and the private sector.
These are the key coordination platforms for each thematic area of development in Laos’ Round Table process.
Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment, Dr Kikeo Chanthaboury, co-chaired the meeting with UN Resident Coordinator and UNDP Resident Representative, Ms Kaarina Immonen.
In his opening remarks, Dr Kikeo said “We all know that we still have two more weeks before the Round Table Implementation Meeting in Champassak province’s capital Pakxe, after the preliminary meeting was held in June this year.”
Government officials have also met to assess progress since the 2016 Round Table Implementation Meeting.
“We discussed the preparation of a timeframe and roadmap for the 2017 Round Table Implementation Meeting. Today we have with us the outcome summary of pre-consultations organised in the run-up to this year’s meeting and all extra comments are welcome,” Dr Kikeo said.
Ms Immonen said pre-consultations had already been held on three topics, including skills and the need for a qualified workforce for human development, a couple of weeks ago.
Officials had agreed on the need for close cooperation between the government and development partners to identify and develop priority economic sectors.
The pre-consultation on quality private sector investment for development had underlined the need for a high-quality, simple and effective regulatory environment.
The pre-consultation on South-South and triangular cooperation stressed that cooperation with other South-South countries should be needs-based with strong national ownership and leadership.
After the final pre-consultation on graduation from Least Developed Country status and Sustainable Development Goals integration, the National Steering Committee will meet to go through all matters with line ministries and national counterparts as part of a review of preparations for the Round Table Implementation Meeting.

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