Elevating a Country's GDP: Laos Agriventures

Sitting between Thailand and Vietnam, the country of Laos is marked by rugged mountains and one of the lowest per capita incomes in the world. This poverty fuels two of the largest industries in the Golden Triangle (Laos, Myanmar, Thailand): opium trade and human trafficking.

Jobs and the hope of the Gospel - they're needed here perhaps more than anywhere else. Fortunately, the Lao government has been implementing reforms meriting attention from US investors. In fact private investors who have watched Laos since the fall of Communism in the late ‘80s are suggesting that only in the last 5 years would they consider Laos worthy of investment based on recent banking and finance reforms, a perceived higher commitment to the rule of law, and international treaties pushing them to embrace international standards. For those interested in alleviating poverty through sustainable business, it's an attractive place. That is why Laos Agriventures got its start. 

The Laos Agriventures' Model

Agriculture dominates the available job market in Laos and yet most modern farming practices have not been implemented, largely due to lack of capital. The potential to improve efficiencies, productivity, revenue and exports is widely available.

By bringing modern and value-added ag projects and processes to Laos, the company seeks to impact the overall GDP of Laos by 2-3%. They have already demonstrated an ability to increase overall farmer income in one community by 30%, and that was with limited operations. Projects include: 

  • Pork Production - the first farm has over 450 sow. The company eventually plans to have 3,000-5,000 sow in 3-5 farms.
  • Feed Mills - providing one form of value-added agriculture, increasing farmer income, and also to feed up to 100,000 pigs each year.
  • Harvest Centers -  grain storage and drying facilities in a seven facilities around the country with the desire to establish dozens more. 
  • Center-pivot corn fields, fish production, soybean processing and many other projects based on the specific needs and resources of the local communities.

Quick Stats and a Little History on the Country

  • GDP 2016 Total - $41 billion
  • Per capita GDP - $5,718
  • Religion - Buddhism
  • Government - One-party socialist republic

Things to Love about Laos Agriventures

Financial Profit - With the booming demand for pork in China, the company's sow facilities are well positioned to serve the expanding market and earn a nice profit for investors. 

Community Transformation - Laos Agriventures is a non-operational, investment vehicle to place funds with XP Trading, which is the operational agribusiness on the ground in Laos. As such all the activities we've highlighted here are Lao led. This was Lao vision and they invited the West/US to play a strong support role.  It would be fair to characterize it as 70% Lao, 30% West/US, in terms of actual management authority as well as overall contribution to the ongoing vision/work. Because of the strong local leadership, the company has been able to understand clearly the strengths and needs of the community. In doing so, they engage the community in partnership for mutual benefit, rather than creating relationships of dependency.  

Gospel Outreach - Laos AgriVentures also partners with the local church in their commitment to sharing the gospel message with those who would hear. Relationships rooted in respect and strengthened over time (direct relationships have been built with 1000s of farmers so far) aid the Gospel outreach efforts. 

To find out more about investing charitable capital in Laos Agriventures or to join their prayer team, please email bob@flintharvest.com