The Department of SME Promotion (DoSMEP), in its on-going efforts to promote SME Development in Lao PDR and address SMEs’ challenges in access to finance, organized a workshop held on 13 February 2020 in Vientiane.
The workshop was an opportunity to share experiences and discuss the business opportunity of SME Banking along with appropriate development strategies with a wider audience beyond the three participating banks – Sacombank, Lao Development Bank, Laoviet Bank - under the World Bank funded Access to Finance for SME project. Participants included banks engaged in SME Banking in Laos, together with the DoSMEP SME Fund’s three partner banks and other stakeholders, including the Bank of Laos PDR, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, the Ministry of Finance, and the Lao National Chamber of Commerce.
The workshop was chaired by Mr Bountheung Douangsavanh (DoSMEP Director General) and included presentations on the policy perspective on SME access to finance by the SME Fund, as well as a strategic approach to developing a SME banking business by the AFC technical team. An engaging panel discussion highlighted the importance of the SME sector for the economy of Laos PDR and the role of banks in supporting the sector’s development, but most importantly, how banks should adopt a well thought out business strategy in order to be successful in SME Banking.
The workshop success was supported by participants’ satisfaction of gaining a better understanding and appreciation of the importance of adopting a Strategic Business Approach to SME Banking so as to support SMEs in Laos PDR.
Source: DOSMEP´s press release