On Wednesday, January 24, 2018, the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed between the Hinrich Foundation (HF) and the Laos Wood Manufacturing Cluster (WMC). The MOU aims to help WMC members through HF’s Export Trade Assistance (ETA) program, while WMC will provide support through facilitating a close working relationship among HF, the WMC members, and local organizations.

The objective of the workshop was to help SMEs improve their knowledge of and practical skills in promoting their products to the international market.

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Hinrich Foundation’s Laos export consultant Pik Chanthalangsy and Laos Wood Manufacturing Cluster’s Yothin Vetsaphong signed an MOU to formalize HF and WMC’s partnership.

Before signing, HF Laos export consultant Pik Chanthalangsy presented the ETA program for small and medium-size enterprises, including its goals and vision for a fruitful, long-term collaboration with WMC and trade organizations, such as the Department of Industry and Handicraft, the Vetsaphong Skills Development and Testing Center, and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).

The ETA program will help WMC members boost their global competitiveness through providing members their own supplier marketing websites via Global Sources Online, as well as bringing local products to Hong Kong trade shows, and featuring companies in comprehensive B2B reports, which target international and wholesale buyers.

“Our ETA program will benefit a lot to the WMC members in terms of helping them promote their wood products to the buyers around the world. In addition, this is a good opportunity for us to expand our outreach and network by cooperating with other international and local organizations in Laos whose mission is also to promote sustainable trade,” Chanthalangsy said.

The MOU signing coincided with the opening of the Wood Manufacturing Trade Show, which will run January 24-March 24, 2018 at the Vetsaphong Skills Development and Testing Center in Vientiane.

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WMC’s opening ceremony included representatives from major institutions such as the World Bank, the International Finance Corp, and the WWF.

Following the signing, a seminar was held, which featured speakers from different organizations, such as the Department of Forestry, the wood manufacturing industry, the Vetsaphong Skills Development and Testing Center, the WWF, the World Bank, and the International Financial Corp.

About the author – Phiengphaneth Chanthalangsy

Hinrich Foundation forms tight partnership with Laos wood manufacturers 3

Phiengphaneth, nicknamed Pik, is a Hinrich Global Trade Leader who completed her master’s degree in Development Communication at the University of Philippines in Los Baños class of 2015. She is currently working as an export consultant for the Export Trade Assistance Program in Laos. Before joining the Foundation, she worked as Communication officer for Oxfam International, an NGO focusing on food security, education, and health in rural areas.