Human Rights Abuses in Laos Are Rampant. International Businesses Should Take Action.

Authoritarianism in Laos is at the root of illegal land grabs, land grievances, and ongoing human rights violations. The upcoming elections in Laos are unlikely to change this. International business stakeholders, however, can do more to support local communities and uphold fundamental human rights.

The Lao government will hold National Assembly elections on February 21. Parliamentary elections take place every five years, but are neither free nor fair. The government has boasted of voter turnouts close to 100% in previous elections. 

Laos, or the Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR), is ruled by a fully authoritarian regime, according to the Human Rights Foundation’s political regime analysis. The Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (LPRP) is the only political party recognized in the Lao Constitution.

Keep reading

Malaak Jamal and Jenny Wang