Swiss to Extend Agro-Biodiversity Initiative in Laos

By Khamphone Syvongxay, Vientiane Times

The Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC) will provide Laos US$6.3 million to continue the work of the Agro-Biodiversity Initiative (Tabi) project.

Phase I was undertaken within 13 development village groups totalling 104 villages in the Phoukoud district, the Xieng Khuang province, the Phonxay district, and the Luang Prabang province.  The project benefited more than 8,000 families, of which, 2,200 families were classified as poor.

In the second phase, Tabi will continue to carry out field-level activities in an expanded area, using and refining the tools and approaches developed in the first phase. It will extend over another four years from July 2012 to June 2016 in Luang Prabang, Xieng Khuang, Huaphan, and Vientiane provinces, with some southern provinces to be included at a later stage.

The overall goal for the project is to contribute to poverty alleviation and improve the livelihoods of upland communities through sustainable management and use of agro-biodiversity in multi-functional landscapes, according to project information.

Phase II will reach more than 15,000 farmers directly and indirectly through its agro-biodiversity-based livelihood sub-projects and forest and land use planning approach, with the farmers being targeted primarily from upland ethnic communities.

The project will also engage in training programmes with a range of government organizations, non-profit associations, and private sector actors.

For more information about Tabi in Laos, visit the SDC for the Mekong Region page.

To look at Tabi’s draft of the Argo-Ecosystem Analysis of the Phonexay district, click here.