Laos Basic Information

By | July 21, 2022
Basic data
Capital Vientiane
Population 7.34 million
Language Lao (+French, English)
Religion Buddhism (66%)
State system People’s Democratic Republic
Head of State Thongloun Sisoulith
Head of government Phankham Viphavanh
Currency name Lao Kip (LAK)

Laos Basic Information

Time shift +6 hours (in summer +5 hours)
Economy 2021
Nominal GDP (billion USD) 64.1
Economic growth (%) 3.7
Inflation (%) 3.9
Unemployment (%) ON

Laos, in full the Lao People’s Democratic Republic, is a landlocked country in Southeast Asia. Its neighbors are Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar and China. Laos is a socialist state with one party in leadership.

Laos is an underdeveloped agricultural country with significant mining of precious wood and mineral resources (including tin, copper, gold). Craft production is widespread. Electricity is almost exclusively produced in hydroelectric power plants. Rice, corn, sweet potatoes, coffee and rubber trees are grown. River transport along the Mekong is important.

With Chinese help (including financing), a transit railway was built in the country (for passenger and freight transport) and a highway network is gradually being built that will connect Laos with China and Thailand in the north-south direction as part of the Chinese “Belt and Road Initiative”. Similarly, China participates in the establishment and development of investment “special economic zones”, which are to serve as a base for the further expansion of not only Chinese but also other foreign companies/investors.

Although the economy of Laos is one of the weakest in the SE Asia region, thanks to the market reforms of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party (and the help of foreign donors…), it has recently been developing promisingly.

This Summary Territorial Information is processed for a country that is so-called accredited. The information is provided in an abbreviated form.

Basic information about the territory


  • System of governance and political tendencies in the country
  • Foreign policy of the country
  • Population

The system of governance and political tendencies in the country

The decisive force in the country is the one-party/communist government with a relatively strong political and economic orientation towards China and Vietnam. Check equzhou to learn more about Laos political system.

Head of State – President: Thongloun Sisoulith

Prime Minister: Phankham Viphavanh

Foreign policy of the country

Laos tries to maintain correct relations with its neighbors, China in particular has a privileged position, followed by Vietnam and Thailand. Check recipesinthebox for Laos defense and foreign policy.

Developed countries/donors (especially France) support the economic development of Laos in the form of foreign aid projects (so-called foreign development cooperation, ZRS).


The majority of the population of Laos belong to the Lao ethnic group, apart from them there are around 120 national minorities living here.

Ethnic composition: 55% Lao, 11% Khmu, 8% Hmong, 2% Vietnamese, 24% other.

Religion: 65% Buddhist, 2% Christian, 33% other (animist belief is widespread, especially among mountain tribes).

Age composition: 0-14 years: 31%, 15-24 years: 21%, 25-54 years: 38%, 55-64 years: 6%, 65+ years: 4%.

Approximately 65% ​​of the population lives in rural areas and 35% in urban areas.