VIENTIANE, Aug. 27 (Xinhua) -- The Lao government will employ only as many new staff as needed to fill the vacancies created by retiring officials, while also attempting to ensure that civil servants are more productive, the government has decided at a weekend meeting.
Consensus on the recruitment policy for 2018 was reached at the government's monthly meeting held on Thursday and Friday, chaired by Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, Lao state-run media Vientiane Times reported on Sunday.
"The meeting agreed that in 2018 the number of new hires will correspond to the number of officials who retire," a statement released by the meeting said.
According to a government report, Laos currently has more than 183,000 civil servants. This equates to 2.8 percent of the total population.
More than 26,000 civil servants are employed at the central level of the government, 36,000 at the provincial level, and some 120,000 at district level.
The number of new recruits taken on next year will be determined by Prime Minister's Decision. The meeting called on all sectors at the central and local levels to review the positions currently held by officials, identifying those that are necessary and those that are not. This is aimed at producing officials who are fully employed and can do multi tasks.
The government stressed that departments at all levels should not expand further, as a way of making the civil service more effective and less wasteful.
The monthly meeting participants also discussed drafts of three decrees concerning national holidays, criteria for graduation from poverty and progress in development, and allowances for poor and disadvantaged primary school children. All of the decrees were approved in principle.