Statistical information Laos 1992Laos

Map of Laos | Geography | People | Government | Economy | Energy | Communication
Military | Transportation | Transnational Issues | Year:  | More stats

Laos in the World
Laos in the World

Qatar Airways

Laos - Introduction 1992
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Background: In 1975 the communist Pathet Lao took control of the government ending a six-century-old monarchy. Initial closer ties to Vietnam and socialization were replaced with a gradual return to private enterprise an easing of foreign investment laws.

Laos - Geography 1992
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Geographic coordinates

Map reference

Total: 236,800 km²
Land: 230,800 km²
Comparative: slightly larger than Utah

Land boundaries:
5,083 km; Burma 235 km, Cambodia 541 km, China 423 km,
Thailand 1,754 km, Vietnam 2,130 km

Coastline: none - landlocked

Maritime claims: none - landlocked
Disputes: boundary dispute with Thailand

Climate: tropical monsoon; rainy season (May to November; dry season (December to April)

Terrain: mostly rugged mountains; some plains and plateaus


Natural resources: timber, hydropower, gypsum, tin, gold, gemstones
Land use

Land use: arable land: 4%; permanent crops: NEGL%; meadows and pastures 3%; forest and woodland 58%; other 35%; includes irrigated 1%

Irrigated land

Major rivers

Major watersheds area km²

Total water withdrawal

Total renewable water resources

Natural hazards


Laos - People 1992
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Population: 4,440,213 (July 1992), growth rate 2.9% (1992)

Nationality: noun - Lao(s) or Laotian(s; adjective - Lao or Laotian

Ethnic groups:
Lao 50%, Phoutheung (Kha) 15%, tribal Thai 20%, Meo,
Hmong, Yao, and other 15%

Languages: Lao (official), French, and English

Religions: Buddhist 85%, animist and other 15%

Demographic profile
Age structure

Age structure

Dependency ratios

Median age

Population growth rate

Birth rate: 44 births/1000 population (1992)

Death rate: 16 deaths/1000 population (1992)

Net migration rate: 0 migrants/1000 population (1992)

Population distribution


Major urban areas

Current issues: deforestation; soil erosion; subject to floods
Current issues note: landlocked

Air pollutants

Sex ratio

Mothers mean age at first birth

Maternal mortality ratio

Infant mortality rate: 107 deaths/1000 live births (1992)

Life expectancy at birth: 49 years male, 52 years female (1992)

Total fertility rate: 6.3 children born/woman (1992)

Contraceptive prevalence rate

Drinking water source

Current health expenditure

Physicians density

Hospital bed density

Sanitation facility access


Major infectious diseases

Obesity adult prevalence rate

Alcohol consumption

Tobacco use

Children under the age of 5 years underweight

Education expenditures

Literacy: 84% (male 92%, female 76%) age 15 to 45 can read and write (1985 est.)

School life expectancy primary to tertiary education

Youth unemployment

Laos - Government 1992
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Country name
Conventional long form: Lao People's Democratic Republic

Government type: Communist state

Capital: Vientiane

Administrative divisions:
16 provinces (khoueng, singular and plural) and 1 municipality* (kampheng nakhon, singular and plural); Attapu, Bokeo,
Bolikhamsai, Champasak, Houaphan, Khammouan, Louang Namtha, Louangphrabang,
Oudomxai, Phongsali, Saravan, Savannakhet, Sekong, Vientiane, Vientiane*,
Xaignabouri, Xiangkhoang

Dependent areas

Independence: 19 July 1949 (from France)

National holiday:
National Day (proclamation of the Lao People's
Democratic Republic), 2 December (1975)

Constitution: promulgated August 1991

Legal system: based on civil law system; has not accepted compulsory ICJ jurisdiction

International law organization participation


Suffrage: universal at age 18
Supreme People's Assembly:
last held on 26 March 1989 (next to be held
NA); results - percent of vote by party NA; seats - (79 total) number of seats by party NA

Executive branch:
president, chairman and two vice chairmen of the
Council of Ministers, Council of Ministers (cabinet)

Legislative branch: Supreme People's Assembly

Judicial branch: People's Supreme Court

Political parties and leaders

International organization participation:
ACCT (associate), AsDB, CP, ESCAP, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO,

Diplomatic representation:
Chancery at 2,222 S Street NW, Washington, DC 20,008; telephone (202) 332-6,416 or 6,417

Charge d'Affaires Charles B. SALMON, Jr.; Embassy at Rue Bartholonie,
Vientiane (mailing address is B. P. 114, Vientiane, or AMEMB, Box V, APO AP 96,546); telephone (856) 2,220, 2,357, 2,384; FAX (856) 4,675

Diplomatic representation

Flag descriptionflag of Laos: three horizontal bands of red (top), blue (double width), and red with a large white disk centered in the blue band

National symbols

National anthem

National heritage

Laos - Economy 1992
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Economy overview:
One of the world's poorest nations, Laos has had a Communist centrally planned economy with government ownership and control of productive enterprises of any size. In recent years, however, the government has been decentralizing control and encouraging private enterprise. Laos is a landlocked country with a primitive infrastructure; that is, it has no railroads, a rudimentary road system, limited external and internal telecommunications, and electricity available in only a limited area.
Subsistence agriculture is the main occupation, accounting for over 60% of
GDP and providing about 85-90% of total employment. The predominant crop is rice. For the foreseeable future the economy will continue to depend for its survival on foreign aid from the IMF and other international sources; aid from the former USSR and Eastern Europe has been cut sharply.

GDP: exchange rate conversion - $800 million, per capita $200; real growth rate 4% (1991)

Real gdp purchasing power parity

Real gdp growth rate

Real gdp per capita ppp

Gross national saving
Gdp composition by sector of origin

Gdp composition by end use

Gdp composition by sector of origin

Agriculture products: accounts for 60% of GDP and employs most of the work force; subsistence farming predominates; normally self-sufficient in nondrought years; principal crops - rice (80% of cultivated land), sweet potatoes, vegetables, corn, coffee, sugarcane, cotton; livestock - buffaloes, hogs, cattle, chicken

Industries: tin and gypsum mining, timber, electric power, agricultural processing, construction

Industrial production growth rate: growth rate 12% (1991 est.), accounts for about 18% of GDP (1991 est.)

Labor force: 1-1.5 million; 85-90% in agriculture (est.)
Organized labor:
Lao Federation of Trade Unions is subordinate to the
Communist party

Labor force

Unemployment rate: 21% (1989 est.)

Youth unemployment

Population below poverty line

Gini index

Household income or consumption by percentage share

Distribution of family income gini index

Budget: revenues $83 million; expenditures $188.5 million, including capital expenditures of $94 million (1990 est.)

Public debt

Taxes and other revenues


Fiscal year: 1 July - 30 June

Current account balance

Inflation rate consumer prices

Central bank discount rate

Commercial bank prime lending rate

Stock of narrow money

Stock of broad money

Stock of domestic credit

Market value of publicly traded shares

Current account balance

Exports: $72 million (f.o.b., 1990 est.)
Commodoties: electricity, wood products, coffee, tin
Partners: Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, USSR, US, China

Imports: $238 million (c.i.f., 1990 est.)
Commodoties: food, fuel oil, consumer goods, manufactures
Partners: Thailand, USSR, Japan, France, Vietnam, China

Reserves of foreign exchange and gold

Debt external

Stock of direct foreign investment at home

Stock of direct foreign investment abroad

Exchange rates: new kips (NK) per US$1 - 710 (May 1992), 710 (December 1991), 700 (September 1990), 576 (1989), 385 (1988), 200 (1987)

Laos - Energy 1992
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Electricity access

Electricity production: 226,000 kW capacity; 1,100 million kWh produced, 270 kWh per capita (1991)

Electricity consumption

Electricity exports

Electricity imports

Electricity installed generating capacity

Electricity transmission distribution losses

Electricity generation sources


Refined petroleum

Natural gas

Carbon dioxide emissions

Energy consumption per capita

Laos - Communication 1992
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Telephones fixed lines

Telephones mobile cellular

Telephone system

Broadcast media

Internet country code

Internet users

Broadband fixed subscriptions

Laos - Military 1992
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Military expenditures
Percent of gdp: exchange rate conversion - $NA, NA% of GDP

Military and security forces

Military service age and obligation

Terrorist groups

Laos - Transportation 1992
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National air transport system

Civil aircraft registration country code prefix

57 total, 47 usable; 8 with permanent-surface runways; none
with runways over 3,659 m; 1
with runways 2,440-3,659 m; 14
with runways 1,220-2,439 m

Airports with paved runways

Airports with unpaved runways


Pipelines: petroleum products 136 km



Waterways: about 4,587 km, primarily Mekong and tributaries; 2,897 additional kilometers are sectionally navigable by craft drawing less than 0.5 m

Merchant marine

Ports and terminals

Laos - Transnational issues 1992
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Disputes international

Refugees and internally displaced persons

Illicit drugs: illicit producer of cannabis, opium poppy for the international drug trade, third-largest opium producer


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