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VIENTIANE, Lao PDR - The Lao Ministry of Planning and Investment (MPI) and UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, announced the winners of the essay contest titled "Why is Data Collection essential for development?" addressed to Lao upper secondary and university or college students from all over the country.

Upper secondary and university students from Vientiane Capital and other provinces participated in the contest launched during the World Population Day held on July. All submissions were blind reviewed by a group of experts from UNFPA and the National University of Laos.

The winners were announced within the framework of the Population Seminar and the launching of the State of the World Population Report celebrated at the Vansana Hotel in Vientiane on December 21, 2010. The winning essays were awarded 1.500.000 LAK, 1.000.000 LAK and 700.000 LAK for first, second and third place, respectively. Some of the winners were invited to present a comment on their essays.



List of winners:First Place
Ms. Manilay Keomany (College/University Student)
Ms. Souliviengkham Sonephet (Upper Secondary Student)

Second Place
Ms. Sakhounhak Manivong (College/University Student)
Mr. Torchae Sengsouly (Upper Secondary Student)
Mr. Sommay Thepbandith (Upper Secondary Student)
Mr. Souksakhone Philavanh (College/University Student)

Third Place
Mr. Chanthasouk Ladsaard (College/University Student)
Ms. Silinthone Dymark (College/University Student)
Mr. Khammoune Simma (College/University Student)
Mr. Sengdaolom Insixiengmai (College/University Student)
Ms. Paxia Vaxouama (College/University Student)
Mr. Sitthiphone Sythomphalad (College/University Student)

Contact information:
Mr. Diego De La Rosa, UNFPA tel: (+856 21) 315547, mobile: (+856) 020 77791053,