This Annual Progress Report (APR) reviews the Poverty Reduction Strategy Paper for Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR). Noticeable improvements have also occurred in many economic, social, institutional, and legal development areas. While strengthening the management of the public sector and governance, the GoL is increasing public investment to develop physical and social infrastructure and promote human resources. The promotion of the private sector is receiving greater attention through significant improvements in the business climate and trade facilitation. Macroeconomic indicators are also evolving in a satisfactorily manner.
This paper reviews issues and evidence concerning tax-motivated, cross-border commodity transactions. A distinction is drawn between "arbitrage trades" (driven by cross-country differences in tax rates) and "tax not paid" transactions (motivated by the opportunity to pay no tax at all on transactions with international aspects). Assessment of the severity of the associated policy problems faces the difficulty that the observed extent of cross-border transactions conveys no information on the induced inefficiency that the possibility of such transactions may generate. Given the difficulty of securing coordination of national tax policies, much of the emphasis in dealing with these problems in the coming years is likely to be on administrative cooperation.
In recent years, the IMF has released a growing number of reports and other documents covering economic and financial developments and trends in member countries. Each report, prepared by a staff team after discussions with government officials, is published at the option of the member country.