IFC supports the Lao People’s Democratic Republic to improve policies and regulations as a first step to help new hydropower projects achieve good international and industry practices.
IFC and the World Bank are working together with the government to revise Lao PDR’s Water Law and revise the Policy on Sustainable Hydropower Development. IFC provides training to the authorities to help them strengthen their skills to implement and monitor compliance with these new laws and regulations.
In addition to ensuring laws and regulations are in place, IFC is also helping to improve planning for hydropower development. During the proposal phase of hydropower projects, government officials and project developers have to negotiate the Social and Environmental Standard Obligations, which are often cumbersome legal documents. IFC is working with the government to simplify these obligations and make them more user-friendly. An improved understanding of the legal documents used to shape hydropower planning will support negotiations that aim to safeguard the environment and riverine communities.