With around 7.4 million inhabitants, Laos is relatively sparsely populated. Over 70% of Laotians depend directly or indirectly on agriculture and forestry for their living. To drive forward the country’s development, the Lao Government is investing in agriculture and forestry, mining, and hydropower. Until now, the rural population has derived limited benefit from this practice and is often not familiar with the legal frameworks governing land, nor the relevant institutions and processes that ensure their land rights. Additionally, most cannot afford the fees to secure a title to their land. In the formalisation of land ownership, women are particularly vulnerable to discrimination as a result of traditional gender-based roles and inadequate sensitisation about their land rights. Poor households and ethnic minorities face similar difficulties.
To address these challenges, Enhanced Land Tenure Security (ELTeS) works on three intervention levels. At the individual level, it is ensured that the personnel necessary for the application of legally compliant procedures and instruments are trained in sufficient numbers. At the cooperation and organisational level, the coordination of the various ministries regarding the Land Act is supported within the framework of implementing ordinances and procedural regulations, and methodological further development and technological innovations in the individual instruments are promoted.
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