Non-reciprocal preferences

The most well-known non-reciprocal preference is the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP) whereby developed countries exempt or reduce tariffs for imports from developing and least developed countries. Laos is a beneficiary of GSP preference from 38 countries, namely Australia, Canada, European Union (EU 28) , Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Russia, Switzerland and Turkey. Given that Belarus and Kazakhstan joins a customs union with Russia, they are also counted as GSP granting countries.  At present, Laos has not yet benefited from GSP from the United States which the Ministry of Industry and Commerce is working on necessary steps to obtain such preference...more

Free Trade Areas (FTAs)

       Preferences that Laos benefits from free trade agreements which is most important to Laos is the ASEAN Trade in Goods Agreement (ATIGA). Laos has also signed free trade agreements with ASEAN dialogue countries: Closer Economic Relations (Australia and New Zealand), China, India, Japan and Korea. In addition, Laos is a party to other FTAs: Lao-Vietnam Trade Agreement and the Asia-Pacific Trade Agreement (APTA).

         Laos is exporting and benefiting from preferential treatment to ASEAN markets mainly to Thailand with the exports totaled US$623 million in 2012, followed by Vietnam and Singapore, amounting to US$69 million and US$44 million, respectively...more


Trade preference is a special and differential treatment mainly in terms of tariff reduction or exemption which may be in either non-reciprocal or reciprocal nature. A typical example of non-reciprocal preference is the generalized system of preferences whereby developed countries apply zero duties to imports from least developed countries. Reciprocal preference refers to an exchange of preferential treatment undertaken under various free trade agreements.  
Trade preference which Laos benefits from can be grouped into 3 categories: 1) Generalized System of Preferences (GSP); 2) preferences of developing countries; and 3) preferences under free trade agreements (FTAs)...more