Project Background

The production of hand-woven textiles is a primary source of income for many families and communities in Lao PDR. Using traditional skills Lao women play a significant role in developing and sustaining the national hand-woven textile industry. Textile handicrafts of Laos are made in various economic contexts ranging from home-based activity, self-employment and local cooperatives to small business enterprises.

However, in the face of globalization and a market driven economy, it is crucial for the disadvantaged to strengthen their skills, knowledge and confidence in order to effectively participate in every stage of the textile value chain – from producing the local raw materials and creating their own traditional designs to trading the products in international markets. Many Lao women weavers, especially those living in rural and/or isolated areas, lack access to information on standards and resources to access both the domestic and international markets.

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The project entitled “Lao Women’s Economic Empowerment through the Handcrafted Textile Industry” is being implemented in an environment where Lao women urgently need sustainable livelihoods and access to global markets. Cuuerntly, pe

The objective of the project is to empower Lao women involved in the textile handicraft value chain in Pakthaep village:

  • With a focus on the marginalized poor;
  • In a way that increases their long-term economic future; and
  • Preserves the uniqueness and Lao identity of textile handicrafts.

In developing the objectives, the December 2003 workshop participants agreed on the following indicators:

  • Women participants in this project are able to double their income;
  • The project preserves and maintains the uniqueness and identity of Lao textile;
  • The project doubles market demand for textile handicraft products;
  • The number of women participating in the textile handicraft value chain increases twofold.


Strategy A
Enable a village ‘owned’ project in the textile industry to empower the poorest and most marginalized women.

Strategy B
Build capacity in the textile sector and related services to support growth and to strengthen the economic empowerment of women

Strategy C
Increase existing demand and/or find new markets for textile handicrafts and related industry

Three main activities are implementing in Paktheap village, Sangthong District Vientiane capital.
1. Sericulture
2. Weaving -focusing on natural dye
3. Marketing


Study Tour in Vietnam.