Assessment of the new Land Law and Forestry Law in Laos: Customary Tenure Rights over Land and Forests

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Author(s): MRLG & LIWG

As a result of the recent passage of the Forest and Land Laws in Lao DPR, this report has been prepared as a resource for development partners and policymakers engaged in the recognition and protection of customary tenure for local communities. The report analyses changes to Lao PDR’s legal framework arising from these Laws, and highlights new opportunities and challenges with respect to the recognition of customary tenure rights. It proposes recommendations, and identifies potential pathways and areas to be further addressed in order to adequately recognise customary tenure.

This report specifically details the differences between the newly promulgated Land Law and Forestry Law and their predecessor laws, the Land Law 2003 and the Forestry Law 2007, respectively, noting both their improvements and shortcomings. It compares the new Land Law with the new Forestry Law to highlight any differences and potential problems arising from gaps and overlaps. Overall, the report proposes the needed courses of action for further input by civil society to the development of implementing decrees, regulations and procedures through a set of recommendations.  

Download: English version