Lao PDR: Gender, Poverty and the MDGs

Institutional Document | December 2004

The Asian Development Bank's (ADB) country briefing paper on women in the Lao People's Democratic Republic (Lao PDR), Women in Development: Lao PDR published in 1996, has been a valuable resource for ADB staff and for other development organizations and development specialists. In the intervening years, there have been a number of developments that affect women's and men's capabilities, opportunities, and agency. These include changes in Lao Government laws and policies, economic shocks such as the Asian financial crisis, rapid economic and social changes related to increasing trade and migration within the Greater Mekong Subregion, and renewed international commitments to poverty reduction and human development reflected in the Millennium Declaration and the Millennium Development Goals.

This paper updates the country briefing paper on women in light of these and other developments. The paper also provides an updated gender strategy and recommendations for ADB's future country strategy and program.


  • Executive Summary
  • Background
  • Gender Statis and Trends
  • National Laws, Policies, and Institutions Promoting Gender Equality
  • Donor and NGO Initiatives Supporting Gender Equality
  • ADB Gender Strategy and Recommendations
  • Annex