Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and Swisscontact sign a Memorandum of Understanding to implement the Waste to Value project

Green cities
The signing ceremony was held at the Lao Plaza Hotel in Vientiane Capital on 18th February 2022 with 24 key representatives from MoNRE, Swisscontact and relevant public stakeholders under chairmanship by Mr. Thevarak Phonekeo, Deputy Director of Department of Environment from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MoNRE) and co-chaired by Mr. Michael Fink, Country Director of Swisscontact in the Lao PDR.
Mr. Thevarak Phonekeo (Left) and Mr. Michael Fink (Right)

The Waste to Value project aims to strengthen the overall environmental performance of service sector SMEs focusing on the hospitality industry through improved waste management, access to alternative products replacing single-use plastics, awareness raising and strengthening public-private collaboration. Given their important role in the waste value chain, the project will further support informal waste pickers in strengthening their business operations to increase their income and quality of livelihood.

The activities of the Waste to Value Project will be implemented until December 2024 and aim to reach up to 600 service sector SMEs and up to 160 informal waste pickers within three target districts in two provinces, namely Xaysetha and Chanthabuly district in Vientiane Capital and Vang Vieng district in Vientiane Province. The project is part of the Swisscontact Development Programme, which is partly co-financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

The signing of the Memorandum of Understanding of the Waste to Value Project underlines the constructive cooperation between Swisscontact and the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment with the aim to make a positive contribution to the environment in the Lao PDR.

Green cities
Waste to Value
Swisscontact's Waste to Value project strengthens the environmental performance in service sector SMEs (hotels, restaurants, cafés and mini-marts) by improving their waste management practices and access to green products. The project further strengthens business operations and improves workplace safety for informal waste pickers increasing their income and quality of livelihood. This is complemented with awareness raising among service sector SMEs and the wider population along with encouraging public-private consultation meetings in the Lao PDR in line with national and municipal government strategies.