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Post Info TOPIC: What do you think about New incentives to lure more Lao officials to remote areas ?

What do you think about New incentives to lure more Lao officials to remote areas ?


The government is classifying different areas of Laos based on the potential hardships faced by government officials posted there, in order establish better incentives to lure public servants to remote areas.

“We're reviewing the results of the region by region hardship classification studies conducted by provincial authorities to see whether they match the realities on the ground,” Minister of Home Affairs Khampane Philavong said in his opening remarks at the review meeting with provincial vice governors held at the ministry from August 9-10.

On November 10 last year, the Prime Minister issued a decree on policy to support public servants working in remote and hardship areas, which addresses the general conditions of the areas, standards of classification, and the responsibilities of ministries, organisations, and local authorities.

The decree classifies remote and hardship areas based on geographic and natural conditions, and factors such as climate, disasters, infrastructure, education and health services, and livelihood.

According to the decree, a remote area means a village, village group or district located far from political, economic and socio-cultural centres of provinces or districts (100 kilometres or more from provincial centres and 20 kilometres or more from district centres).

Hardship areas are classified as areas, villages, or village groups which suffer from particular geographic isolation or other special difficulties like disease epidemics or security issues.

Officials and public servants will receive monetary compensation and other incentives to accept postings in remote or hardship areas.

Public servants who work on an ongoing or regular basis in areas classified as most remote or as containing the greatest hardships will receive monetary support at 50 percent of their base salary per month, and other incentives including professional training and political theory tuition, and may also receive awards for national service.

A shortage of public servants, especially skilled ones, in remote rural areas has been raised as a key obstacle to development in many sectors, particularly the education sector, which has faced a chronic teacher shortage in rural areas for many years.

The government is setting up incentive policies with the aim of encouraging more government workers, particularly skilled personnel, to take both regular and irregular postings in remote areas, in order to speed up development and poverty eradication

Mr Khampane said it is very important that the policies are formulated objectively and reflect reality, so that they satisfy government workers in remote areas, adding that if the policies are not clear, it will be difficult to implement the scheme, resulting in a waste of budget resources.

The Prime Ministerial Decree has been disseminated nationwide, while the committees responsible for the implementation of the new policy were established at both provincial and district levels throughout the country.The new government policies will take effect in October.


By Somxay Sengdara 
(Latest Update August 11, 2011)


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