1. What business sectors can BAF II support ?

Please see the grant eligibility page on this website for details.

2. What are the eligible activities for BAF II grant funding ?

Examples of the kinds of technical assistance BAF II is willing to co-fund include (but are not necessarily limited to):
• Attaining quality standards needed to enter new markets or attract new customers
• Strategic or technical management guidance relating to the business field(s) in which you operate
• Up-grading ICT and internal work processes
• Improvements in production efficiency and competitiveness
• Improvements in branding and marketing [1]
• Creating better market linkages and export promotion
• Developing products or services that reduce the need for imports
• Pursuing new innovations in business practices, products or services
If you are unsure whether the technical assistance you have in mind is eligible or not, please feel free to contact us for guidance.

3. How do I apply for BAF grant?

Companies should register on the website and submit a completed application form, along with supporting documents describing the business growth plan, budgets/costs, and quotations from suppliers. Please click here to access the application form.

4. Is there any fee for application?

There is NO application fee or processing fee.

5. What are my chances of getting a matching grant from BAF II?

Applications to BAF II can be submitted at any time, and will be processed in the same order that they are submitted / received. We anticipate providing around 50 grants in the first year of operations (commencing July 2019), and around 100 grants in each of the second and third years. However, we do anticipate receiving more applications for funding than we can support, and there will be a significant number of submissions that will not be successful (also see the next questions and answer). In the interests of ensuring an equitable balance of activities, business sectors, geographic location, etc., as well as ensuring ‘value for money’, BAF II will need to be strategic and selective in the grants it provides.

6. What happens if my application for grant funding is rejected?

The decision of BAF II on which companies and activities will provide matching grant funding is final, and there is no process by which decisions can be appealed.

7. Can a business development service provider apply for a grant ?

All grant applications submitted to BAF II must be from the company seeking grant co-funding to pay for technical services. Business development service providers may not apply on behalf of a client, or potential client. However, business development service providers may applicant for grant funding in support of technical services they wish to receive to build their own business.

8. What are the supporting documents required for disbursement ?

For reimbursement of 50% of the costs incurred, a set of key ‘deliverables’ and documentary evidence will be outlined in the formal (and legally binding) Letter of Agreement. Depending on the type of activity approved, examples of the ‘deliverables’ include a final activity report, proof of full payment, such as an original invoice and receipt, etc.

9. Can a company that has received a grant apply for follow-on grants ?

Yes, a company may apply for a follow-on grant, provided the activities supported by the earlier grant were completed satisfactorily, and the activities proposed for the follow-on grant are merit-able. Companies that applied under BAF I may also apply to BAF II.

10. How much grant funding can I apply for ?

Most grants will be under US$20,000. No firm or group of firms under common control or common ownership may receive more than US$200,000 in grant funding in total. BAF II can only provide grant funding for up to 50% of the total cost of the technical assistance agreed. The grant is provided upon successful and verifiable completion of the activity, and after proof is provided that the company has paid in full for these services.

11. Can BAF provide grants in advance ?

No. Companies must receive and pay in full for the technical services agreed in the formal Letter of Agreement before BAF II can issue the grant. The grant is made in a single payment.

12. What happens if the final cost of the technical services is different from the original estimate ?

The amount of grant funding that BAF II will pay cannot exceed the figure stated in the Letter of Agreement, AND cannot be more than 50% of the total cost of the technical services provided. If the total cost of the technical services provided is greater than originally estimated in the Letter of Agreement, then the company must pay the additional amount. If the total cost of the technical services provided is smaller than originally estimated in the Letter of Agreement, then BAF II will issue a grant equivalent to 50% of that revised figure.

13. If we do not have a business plan, can we still apply for a BAF grant?

A detailed business plan is not essential at the time of grant application. However, a clear rationale for the grant funding support will need to be made, and should provide a clear link between the technical services inputs proposed and the company’s growth plans. If necessary, the BAF II team of Business Advisors will support you in this process.

14. Can the service provider be outside of Lao PDR?

Yes, the service provider can be overseas, if no comparable provider can be sourced within the country. Applicant companies are potentially free to use any service provider, as long as they are suitably qualified to deliver the service, and meets with BAF II’s prior approval. BAF II puts significant emphasis on value for money, and will need to see that the cost of the technical services provided is within acceptable market norms.

15. Can I use the services of a freelance or individual consultant ?

Yes, the technical inputs a suitably qualified freelance service provider can be eligible for BAF II grant co-funding support. However, the applicant company must be enrolled for withholding tax in Laos to be eligible for reimbursement.

16. Can I use technical services provided by a government organization or civil servant ?

No, BAF II cannot cross-subsidize technical services that might be provided by Government agencies or other donor organizations.

17. I am a business development services provider. How can I list my service on the BAF website ?

If you are a service provider and wish to have your company included on the BAF II network, please click here and register. However, please note that BAF II has sole discretion on whether to place your service information on the website, and under no circumstances will BAF endorse any particular service provider.

[1] Support for website design, which may include up to one year of website maintenance, is limited to a total cost of US$3,000 equivalent, so the maximum grant size would be US$1,500.