Traders along roads in the villages of Nonkhor, Khamsavath, and Nonsavang are being affected by delayed road upgrades, with roads left unsurfaced since January.

They complain that some of their customers are refusing to buy their cooked food because these roads are dirty and dusty, which is affecting their daily incomes, even forcing some of them to close.

A seller of noodle soup, Ms Chan in Nonkhor village, said the authorities announced road resurfacing plans early last year while preparations for the upgrade started last February.

She told the Vientiane Times the work lasted for just two weeks before it stopped for a very long period and now several shops have dust problems as well as a lack of customers who are concerned about food hygiene.

For example, she used to earn 300,000-500,000 kip per day from sales of noodle soup, but now she takes in just 150,000-250,000 kip. The owner of a shop selling grilled duck, Mr Kham, said that dust, as well as the difficulties faced in travelling through Nonsavang and Nonkhor villages, has led to customers refusing to sit and eat in his shop, but a few people still buy duck to take home with them.

He was anxious to hear from the authorities how long he has to wait for the roads to be finished so that he can re-grow his business, and provide service to the local community.