Market Research in Laos
Laos is a fast-developing country surrounded by powerful neighbors.
It has the potential to be a leading player in the regional economy. Laos is one of East Asia’s fastest developing nations. Many regard it as Asia’s most resource-rich country.
Using the country’s abundant mineral wealth, one of Laos’s top industries is mining. Gold, copper, lead, and gypsum are some of the most significant resources. Laos is home to the Sepon gold mine, one of the largest globally, estimated to have 7.65 million oz of gold.
Agriculture is one of the critical industries. It contributes to a large percentage of the employment in Laos. Rice, coffee, opium, and corn are the major crops grown in Laos, and the textile industry is also a significant contributor to the employment rate. Europe is one of the primary receivers of Laotian textile exportations. Most of these exports go to nations within the EU.
Cities and Economic Centers
Tourism is one of the fastest-growing industries in Laos. Chinese, Thai, and Vietnamese tourists are the main visitors of this land-locked country.
Vientiane is the laidback and comfortable capital of Laos. With temples, government buildings, hotels, and more, Laos is attractive to tourists. It’s the perfect place for a peaceful and culture-rich experience. In Vientiane, visitors can find a campus of large western-style homes. Known to the locals as Panyathip, these homes cater to the foreign market.
Luang Prabang is a city full of natural and cultural attractions. The monks’ daily ritual of collecting donations is quite an event. Tourists and locals alike take part in this ritual. Biking through Luang Prabang is a standard mode of transport amongst visitors. Luang Prabang also has charming and historic rivers, waterfalls, and caves.
Laos is becoming more involved in this digital age with millions of internet users. Social media is the main reason for engagement, with Facebook and Instagram at the top.
Millennials and Gen Zs are the largest groups of social media users in Laos. LinkedIn has a smaller but significant user count that’s increasing every year.
The historical culture is also evident in the country’s architecture and style. Traditional clothing is part of Laos everyday fashion, and different ethnic groups have their unique styles. They make for the colorful clothing trends seen in various areas of Laos.
Materials, patterns, and cuts from Laos are showing up in globally trending designs. They appeal to both local and international buyers.
Growing Consumer Market
A new interest in organic products has taken root in some Laos consumer’s minds. Still, consumers aren’t willing to commit to the concept of organic products. That’s due to the price difference between organic and standard products. Consumers with higher education levels are willing to sacrifice price for health, however. They’re showing that interest in organic food can become widespread with time.
With a growing middle class, more consumers can afford more than only necessities. Laotian consumers have shown that advertising can influence them. They respond to advertising through celebrities, word of mouth, and television.
Laotian consumers prefer to shop in their neighboring countries like Thailand. Most of these shoppers are looking for better quality goods and facilities. Younger consumers are also seeking higher standards for their shopping areas. Another goal of shopping in neighboring countries is to socialize with peers.
Recreational shopping is popular in Thailand. Yet, ordinary Laotians prefer to shop in their homeland markets. That’s where most people buy produce and textiles.
Laos has the lowest taxes in East Asia. This strategy is to attract foreign business and investments. Corporate income taxes, progressive income taxes, and VAT (value-added tax) are low. These tax incentives appeal to local and foreign companies.
The country’s new-found development and strategic location present a significant opportunity. Investments are rolling into Laos at a high rate. The government has many SEZs (specific economic zones), contributing a considerable amount to Laos’ boosted economic growth. Companies like Nikon and Toyota have factories in Laos’ SEZs. The draw for them was the agreeable laws and low taxes.
Laos’ SEZs are helpful to locals as well. They generate jobs and lower the country’s already low unemployment rate.