2.2.1. Trafficking and sexual exploitation
In general, GoL discourages or forbids publication of findings that demonstrate the extent of social problems within society, unless these can be attributed to poverty or to negative external influences. For example, following several reports that identified evidence of commercial and exploitation of children by foreign residents and investors, a consortium of CSOs was authorised to carry out the first systematic survey of commercial and sexual exploitation of children. This showed a high level of exploitation by Lao adults; the results were never published.
The EU only directly supported two initiatives that addressed trafficking, both indirectly. An EU-commissioned study of links between village resettlement and EU (or other) programmes supported by the Food Facility BA credits noted that children from certain ethnolinguistic minority groups are over-represented in the number of human trafficking victims in Laos and that the majority of minority trafficking victims come from villages that have been resettled or relocated. The EU also supported one CSO project to improve nutrition in one ethnic minority village cluster, within which education on trafficking risks was addressed.