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On 23 February 2016, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Thailand, in cooperation with the European Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Laos, organized a seminar on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Laos. The seminar was attended by H.E. Somchith Inthamith, Vice Minister of Industry and Commerce Laos and 70 participants from the private sector, government agencies, diplomatic corps, and civil society.

Speaking at the opening of the seminar the Netherlands Ambassador, H.E. Mr. Karel Hartogh stressed that “that nowadays no entrepreneur can afford to ignore CSR. Not only because consumers and governments might expect you to incorporate CSR into your business models, but also because CSR can produce concrete results for your company.”

At the seminar, the role of the Dutch government in promoting CSR was explained by an expert from the Centre for the Promotion of Imports from Developing Countries. The companies Heineken, DiepVu Laos and Green Discovery Laos, which represent the three key economic sectors in Laos (agriculture, manufacturing and tourism), focused on their practical experiences with CSR in Laos in their respective presentations. All three companies indicated that they experienced an increase of their productivity and better market opportunities thanks to their CSR-activities.