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Cablegate: Application for 2008 Denver Resource Economics Course

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHVN #0184 0840321
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 240321Z MAR 08
FM AMEMBASSY VIENTIANE
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 1926

UNCLAS VIENTIANE 000184

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EEB/ESC/IEC/ENR
STATE FOR FSI/SPAS/ECON LISA FOX
STATE FOR HR/CDA/ML RECINOS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: AFSI APER ENGR EMIN ECON LA
SUBJECT: APPLICATION FOR 2008 DENVER RESOURCE ECONOMICS COURSE

REF: STATE 20791

1. Per reftel, the following is Joshua Archibald's application for
the 2008 Denver Resource Economics Course, PE-142, scheduled for
July 7-11.

Current Assignment: Economic/Commercial/ESTH/AID/UXO/ODC officer in
Vientiane Laos until summer 2009.

Phone: (856)-21-26-7156 (office)
Mobile: (856)-20-551-1740
Email: archibaldjc@state.gov

Tentative travel plans: Depart Laos Friday July 4 enroute to DC,
expected arrival July 5 and expected departure July 12.

2. Mr. Archibald covers energy and mining for Embassy Vientiane.
Laos is currently enjoying a massive resource boom, led by
Australian mining firms and foreign hydropower investment. The
largest taxpayer, largest exporter, and second largest employer in
the country is Oxiana Mining of Australia, whose Sepon gold and
copper mine has single-handedly pushed Oxiana into the middle rank
of mining firms worldwide. Pan-Australian Mining has a concession
covering about 1,000 square miles (over one percent of the country)
and a gold/copper mine expected to generate profits similar to
Oxiana. A Chinese-Australian joint venture is preparing an aluminum
mine expected to generate an export value approximately equal to the
current Lao GDP. Overseas investors from China, Vietnam, and
Sweden, among others, are pursuing a wide range of plantation
agriculture and other natural-resource based business
opportunities.

3. In light of the importance of mining and natural resource
exploitation to the Lao economy, the Denver Resource Economics
Seminar appears to offer an excellent opportunity to expand Mr.
Archibald's understanding of the sector and improve Embassy
Vientiane's future reporting.

MCGEEHAN

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