VIENTIANE, LAO PDR (20 April 2017) — The Asian Development Bank (ADB), through its Lao PDR Resident Mission, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs jointly organized an event to celebrate 50 years of development partnership between Lao People’s Democratic Republic and ADB, as well as mark the 50th anniversary of the country’s membership in the multilateral institution.

The event was opened by Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister, Thongphane Savanphet, and Director General for ADB’s Southeast Asia Department James A. Nugent. Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Somdy Douangdy, Minister of Planning and Investment Souphan Keomixay, ADB’s Executive Director David F. Murchison, as well as other key government officials, private sector representatives, development partners, academia, civil society advocates, and members of the media were also in attendance.

“Since our first operations in Lao PDR in 1968, ADB, together with other development partners, has worked closely with the government to promote inclusive economic growth, contribute to poverty reduction, and support sustainable economic and social development,” said Mr. Nugent.

Since ADB’s first loan to the country in 1970, ADB has provided almost $2.6 billion in financial and technical support in energy, transport infrastructure, agriculture, water supply and sanitation, municipal infrastructure and services, education, health, banking and finance, as well as regional cooperation and integration.

To mark 50 years of development partnership between Lao PDR and ADB, a photo exhibit was launched, reflecting ADB’s contribution to the country’s development journey.

“ADB is reaffirming its long-term commitment and partnership with the Government of Lao PDR to continue helping the country achieve its 8th National Socioeconomic Development Plan 2016-2020 goals of inclusive and sustainable growth and eligibility to graduate from the least developed country status by 2020,” Mr. Nugent said.

ADB, based in Manila, is dedicated to reducing poverty in Asia and the Pacific through inclusive economic growth, environmentally sustainable growth, and regional integration. Established in 1966, ADB is celebrating 50 years of development partnership in the region. It is owned by 67 members—48 from the region.

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