For the Lao People's Democratic Republic, bananas continue to be a top earner among all agricultural products, earning revenue for local development, despite the government banning the creation of more plantations.
The export value of bananas to neighbouring countries, mainly China and Thailand, last year increased to about US$198 million, which is higher than in previous years, according to the Ministry of Industry and Commerce.
In 2017, Laos earned US$167.9 million from banana exports which dipped to US$112 million in 2018, ranking fourth in terms of revenue among all agricultural exports. Other major agricultural export earners are include cassava, raw coffee, rubber, maize and rice.
The export value of bananas increased as various plantations operating under the contract farming system became ready for harvesting.