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Published on : Saturday, November 2, 2013
Foreign investors are flocking to the shores of Laos, expanding their hotel and office development, and Vientiane in particular, due to a strong demand as a fallout of investment growth in sectors such as the energy industry, according to Colliers International Thailand.
The company’s research data shows that due to the growth of tourism and business travel to Vientiane, the number of international arrivals in Laos last year was far higher than in 2011, at about three million – probably the highest till date.
This was due to new government policies that attracted more tourists, such as visa exemptions, new airline routes and the “Visit Laos Year 2012″ promotional campaign. Laos forecasts welcoming 3.7 million visitors this year, up 14 per cent from last year.
Surachet Kongcheep, Colliers’ associate director in its research department, said some 990 upper-scale hotel rooms are scheduled to be completed next year in three districts, with roughly an equal split between the three.
Many foreign investors have invested in developing four-and five-star hotels in Vientiane, such as Vietnam’s HAGL and the Regal Global Investment and Development Group from Singapore.
Some large-scale mixed-use projects from foreign investors have also been planned for future development in Vientiane, with hotels such as the Vientiane New World, located along the Mekong River; the World Trade Centre in the centre of the capital; the Vientiane Complex; and another hotel project to be built by the BIM Group.
Many foreign investors are operating in Laos in a range of industries and they require quality office space in Vientiane with security systems, adequate parking space and high-quality management, he said.
Many foreign companies in the country are currently renting houses or shop-houses for office use.
The average range of rental rates for office buildings in Vientiane is US$5-$15 (Bt155-Bt465) per square metre per month, depending on facilities and location.