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Oudomxay banana farms unable to renew contracts

Source: Vientiane Times, June 10, 2017
A number of banana farms in Oudomxay province have ceased operations after their contracts expired following numerous complaints from local residents that their operations were negatively affecting the environment.
The farms are operated by 11 concession holders. Seven companies are still continuing their operations but four companies’ contracts have expired and the authorities will not renew them.
A provincial Agriculture and Forestry Department official, Mr Bounyeun Xayyaven told Vientiane Times yesterday the 11 companies had concessions and rented the land of local residents to operate their banana farms, but four of those companies had ended their work after their contracts expired.
The seven companies that are currently still in business will also cease work when their contracts expire, he said, adding that in each case the investors are returning the land to their owners upon the expiration of their contracts.
Of the remaining companies, some still have three year contracts while others have five year contracts but they must comply with government policy on environmental protection as long as they are still in operation, Mr Bounyeun said.
Last year, the Prime Minister’s Office ordered farms that were preparing to cultivate banana trees to cease work. Companies that own thousands of hectares of banana plantations where trees have already been planted will not be allowed to plant any more after harvesting the crop.
Chinese-owned banana farms are not only found in the north of Laos, there are also hundreds of hectares of bananas under cultivation in Vientiane province and the capital.
According to a National Assembly report in October last year, some provinces are using too many insecticides, pesticides and chemical fertilisers, but this issue did not feature in reports submitted to the Assembly.
Some people became ill and some allegedly died after pesticide was sprayed on farms, but the reports did not say where this had occurred.
There are no bananas grown on Chinese-owned farms for sale in local markets as the farms send all their fruit to China. The bananas are packed in cardboard boxes for immediate shipment to China after they are harvested.

Laos prime minister concerned over banana plantations

Source: Reuters, May15,2017
The prime minister of Laos has voiced concern over widespread chemical usage on banana plantations after a Reuters report on Chinese-run farms in the Southeast Asian country.

Laos' Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith delivers a speech  in Hanoi, Vietnam 26 October 2016.  REUTERS/Luong Thai Linh/Pool

Laos’ Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith delivers a speech in Hanoi, Vietnam 26 October 2016. REUTERS/Luong Thai Linh/Pool

Xayaboury Suspends Banana Farms

Source: Lao News Agency (KPL), 26/5/2017

Phouthong Sivongsa

(KPL) ‘Xayaboury authorities have permanently suspended plantations of aroma bananas totally sized more than 360 ha, and plan to grow alternative cash crops to replace banana farming.’

The Planning and Cooperation Division under the Xayaboury Provincial Agriculture and Forestry Department told local media on May 24 that the Xayaboury Governor issued an order suspending aroma banana farming and banning further expansion of banana farms last year.

ກອງປະຊຸມສະຫຼຸບຜົນງານຂອງໂຄງການ QDF

ໂດຍ: ແອັດມິນ

ໃນວັນທີ 28 ເດືອນ ເມສາ ປີ 2017 ອົງການ ບ້ານຈຸດສຸມສາກົນ  (VFI) ໄດ້ເປີດກອງປະຊຸມສະຫຼຸບ ການດໍາເນີນງານຂອງ ໂຄງການ QDF. ກອງປະຊຸມຄັ້ງນີ້ແມ່ນໄດ້ຈັດຂື້ນຢູ່ຫ້ອງການຂອງ  VFI ແລະ ໄດ້ມີການນໍາສະເໜີກ່ຽວກັບ ເຄື່ອງມືສື່ສານ ແລະ ປຶກສາຫາລືຊຸມຊົນໃນຂະບວນການຈັດຫາທີ່ດິນ ທີ່ສອດຄ້ອງກັບມາດຖານຂອງ FPIC. ບັນດາກິດຈະກຳ ແລະ ເຄື່ອງມື່ແມ່ນເກີດມາຈາກການຮ່ວມມືກັນ ກັບອົງການຈັດຕັ້ງທາງສັງຄົມ ແລະ  ບັນດາ ບໍລິສັດຕ່າງໆ (ພາກສວ່ນເອກກະຊົນ) ເຊິ່ງນຳພາໂດຍ ບ້ານຈຸດສຸມສາກົນ  (VFI), ບໍລິສັດ ສະຕໍຣາ ເອັນໂຊ ລາວ, ຫ້ອງການ RECOFTC ປະຈຳລາວ, ໂຄງການ LIFE ທີ່ໄດ້ຮັບການສະໜັບສະໜູນ ໂດຍ ອົງການ MRLG. ໃນກອງປະຊຸມນີ້ ຍັງໄດ້ເປີດໂອກາດໃຫ້ຜູ້ເຂົ້າຮ່ວມໃນການຖາມ ຄຳຖາມ ແລະ ໂອ້ລົມແລກປ່ຽນນຳກັນກ່ຽວກັບວຽກງານດັ່ງກ່າວ.

ທີມງານຈາກຫ້ອງການ VFI and RECOFTC ປະຈຳລາວ ກຳລັງສະຫຼຸບຜົນງານຂອງການປະຕິບັດໂຄງການ QDF, ວັນທີ 28 ເດືອນ ເມສາ ປີ 2017

ທີມງານຈາກຫ້ອງການ VFI and RECOFTC ປະຈຳລາວ ກຳລັງສະຫຼຸບຜົນງານຂອງການປະຕິບັດໂຄງການ QDF, ວັນທີ 28 ເດືອນ ເມສາ ປີ 2017

ປະເດັນຫຼັກໆໃນການນຳສະເໜີໃນກອປະຊຸມນີ້ກໍ່ຄື ການນຳໃຊ້ບັນດາເຄື່ອງມືການສື່ສານໃນການໃຫ້ຄຳປຶກສາຫາລື ທີ່ທາງທີມງານໄດ້ຜະລິດຂື້ນມາເພື່ອ ນຳໃຊ້ເຂົ້າໃນການອະທີບາຍຂະບວນການກ່ຽວກັບການຈັດຫາທີ່ດິນໃຫ້ແກ່ຊາວບ້ານໃຫ້ມີຄວາມເຂົ້າໃຈກ່ຽວກັບຂະບວນການຫຼາຍຂື້ນ ໂດຍສະເພາະແມ່ນ ການນຳໃຊ້ ໂປສເຕີ ແລະ ວິດີໂອ ທີ່ໄດ້ນຳໃຊ້ເຂົ້າໃນການຝຶກອົບຮົມ ຂອງທີມງານ ກັບ ຊາວບ້ານ.

ໂດຍລວມແລ້ວກິດຈະກຳທີ່ໄດ້ຈັດຂື້ນແມ່ນ ເປັນກໍລະນີສຶກສາ ເຖິງການເອົາໃຈໃສ່ ແລະ ຄວາມຈິງໃຈຂອງການເຮັດວຽກຮ່ວມກັນລະຫວ່າງ ບໍລິສັດ ແລະ ບັນດາບ້ານ.

Final wrap up and showcase meeting of QDF project

By Admin

On 28 April, 2017, Village Focus International (VFI) organized the QDF (Quick Disbursement Fund) project Wrap-up and showcase workshop. The meeting was organized in outdoor zone of Village Focus International office, and presented about the consultation communication tools for improving Land Acquisition Processes in line with FPIC (Free Prior and Informed Consent) standards that was a joint effort between different civil society organisations and an agro-forestry company, and was led by VFI, Stora Enso Laos (SEL), RECOFTC Laos, LIFE Consortium. The project was supported by Mekong Region Land Governance (MRLG) project. In this meeting also opened space for attendee to discuss and ask questions to the team from VFI, RECOFTC Laos and representative from agro-forestry project, Stora Enso Laos.

Chinese company to build modern agricultural industrial park in Laos

Source: Xinhua, 26/4/2017
VIENTIANE, April 26 (Xinhua) — Lao Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with China’s Xuanye (Lao) Co., Ltd/AVIC International Beijing Co., Ltd on a modern agricultural industrial park project in Laos.
The agricultural industrial park will serve as a supporting project to the under-construction China-Laos railway, building a regional center of agricultural products trading, warehousing and logistics hub platform.
Speaking at the signing ceremony on Tuesday, Lao Minister of Agriculture and Forestry Lien Thikeo said since the launching of the Chinese-proposed Belt and Road Initiative, many Chinese enterprises have come to invest in Laos with constructive proposals, providing new impetus and direction of development to Laos to turn the country from a land-locked to a land-linked country.
The ministry is expected to cooperate with Xuanye to build a demonstration of modern agricultural industrial park in Laos, with the construction of the China-Laos railway to deepen bilateral trade cooperation and accelerate the transformation of Lao agricultural sector.
Previously, local government of Lao central Savannakhet province signed an agreement with Xuanye on a 2,000-hectare plantation demonstration.
After over two years, the demonstrative plantation zone is helping export Lao rice to China, and through the implementation of Chinese standards and technology, the farmers are changing the habit of slash-and-burn cultivation with low yield while maintaining the “green and organic” characteristics of Lao rice.
Chairman of Xuanye (Lao) Co., Ltd Xu Guowu said that the Belt and Road Initiative has refreshed the China-Laos cooperation with a new international cooperation platform, helping many developing and under-developed countries to enter the “fast lane” of development.
Both sides will conduct research later mainly on China’s agricultural technology and its market demand for Laos’ organic eco-agricultural products, technology innovation cooperation in Laos.

Xayaboury to Halt Banana Plantations mid This Year

The northern province of Xayaboury has decided that as of mid-this year, no more Chinese investments in banana plantations will be allowed. Currently, there are over 520 ha of banana plantations in the province.

Chinese banana plantation investments are suspected as the cause of several problems including the over-use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides and insecticides which have failed to comply with required standards, thus affecting local communities and the environment.

Ministry to closely monitor agri-business

Vientiane Times, February 7, 2017.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry will this year closely monitor domestic and foreign investment in this sector as it believes that many companies have not implemented the agreements made or complied with stipulated feasibility study methods.The ministry will strictly apply management measures to investors and companies that have made no progress with their proposed projects or had an adverse impact on local communities and the environment.However, the ministry has not revealed the numbers and names of the companies concerned, the ministry reported at its annual meeting in Vientiane at the end of last year.Last year, 733 domestic and foreign companies agreed to invest in the agriculture and forestry sector in Laos with total investment of US$3.55 billion while US$1.74 billion of registered funding was allocated to land concessions on about 467,980 hectares.

Some 107 companies invested in livestock projects with funding of US$338.88 million, 345 companies invested in agriculture with funding of about US$1.22 billion, 232 companies invested in tree plantations with funding of about US$1.96 billion, and 49 companies ploughed US$34 million into service sector projects.



ໜັງສືພີມ ວຽງຈັນທາມສ, ເມສາ 4 2016

ທີມ​ງານ​ຄົ້​ນ​ຄົ້ວາ​ກະ​ສີ​ກຳ​ໄດ້​ຮຽກ​ຮ້ອງ​ໃຫ້​ລັດ​ຖະ​ບານ​ວາງ​ນະ​ໂຍ​ບາຍ​​ ແລະ ​ມາດ​ຕະ​ການບັງຄັບ ເພື່ອ​ຄຸ້ມ​ຄອງ​ການ​ລົງ​ທືນ​ປູກ​ຫມາກ​ກ້ວຍ​ໃນ​ປະເທດລາວ, ​ຫລັງ​ຈາກ​ພວກ​ເຂົາ​ເຫັນ​ວ່າ​ມີ​ຜົນ​ກະ​ທົບ​ດ້ານລົບ​ທາງ​ດ້ານ​ສັງ​ຄົມ​ ແລະ​ ສະພາບແວດ​ລ້ອມ​.

ທີມ​ງານ​ຈາກ​ສະ​ຖາ​ບັນ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວາກະ​ສີ​ກຳແລະ​ປ່າ​ໄມ້​ແຫ່ງ​ຊາດ​ແລະ​ມະ​ຫາ​ວິ​ທະ​ໄລ​ແຫ່ງ​ຊາດ​ລາວ​ໄດ້​ເຮັດ​ການ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວ​າກ່ຽວກັບການປູກ​ຫມາກ​ກ້ວຍ​ໂດຍ​ໄດ້​ຮັບ​ການ​ສະ​ຫນັບ​ສະ​ຫນູນ​ຈາກ​ຫລາຍອົງ​ການ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ສາ​ກົນ. ຂໍ້​ສະ​ເໜີ​ແມ່ນ​ລວມ ທັງຫລັກການ ກ່ຽວກັບ​ນະ​ໂຍ​ບາຍ​ການຕະຫຼາດທີ່ເໝາະສົມເພື່ອ​ຫລີກ​ລ້ຽງຄວາມ​ສ່ຽງ​ທາງ​ດ້ານ​ລາ​ຄາຕົກຕໍ່າ​ແລະ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ປະຕິບັດນະ​ໂຍ​ບາຍ​ບັງ​ຄັບ​ໃຊ້​ກົດ​ຫມາຍ​ສີ່​ງ​ແວດ​ລ້ອມຢ່າງຈິງຈັງ​. ພາກ​ສ່ວນ​ທີ​ກ່ຽວຂ້ອງ​ຄວນ​ສ້າງແຜນ​​ຄຸ້ມ​ຄອງ​ສະພາບແວດ​ລ້ອມ​ແລະ​ເຮັດ​ການ​ປະ​ເມີນ​ຜົນ​ກ່ອນ​ທີ່ຈະ​ອະນຸ​ມັດ​ການ​ລົງ​ທຶນ​ລັກສະນະເຊັ່ນນີ້ໃນ​ອະ​ນາ​ຄົດ. ພາກ​ສ່ວນ​ທີ່​ກ່ຽວ​ຂ້ອງ​ຍັງ​ຄວນ​ສຶບ​ຕໍ່ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ປະ​ຕິ​ບັດ​ປັດ​ໃຈ​ການ​ຜະ​ລິດ​ທີ່ເປັນ​ມິດ​ຕໍ່ສະພາບ​ແວດ​ລ້ອມ​ແລະ​ຄຸ້ມ​ຄອງການ​ນຳ​ໃຊ້ສານ​ເຄ​ມີ, ຄວນ​ມີ​ເງີນ​ຄ້ຳ​ປະ​ກັນ​ລ່ວງຫນ້າ​ເພື່ອ​ຟື້ນຟູ​ສະ​ພາບ​​ແວດ​ລ້ອມ​ແລະ​ຊັບ​ພະ​ຍາ​ກອນ​ທຳ​ມະ​ຊາດ​ເຊັ່ນ:ດິນ,ຄຸນ​ນະ​ພາບ​ນ້ຳ​ ແລະ ​ອືນໆ ສຳ​ລັບ​ບໍ​ລິ​ສັດ​ທີ່ບໍ່​ປະ​ຕິ​ບັດ​ຕາມ​ເງື່ອນ​ໄຂ​. ທີມ​ງານ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວາ​ຍັງ​ໄດ້​ໃຫ້​ຄຳ​ເຫັນ​ໃນ​ການ​ສ້າງ​ຕັ້ງ​ຄະ​ນະ​ກຳ​ມະ​ການ​​ຂັ້ນ​ແຂວງເພື່ອກວດສອບ ແລະ ລົງທະບຽນ ໃນການ​ໃຊ້ສານ​ເຄ​ມີ ລວມທັງ ​ຢາ​ຂ້າ​ສັດ​ຕູ​ພຶດ​ແລະ​ຢາ​ຂ້າ​ຫ້​ຍາ​ໃນການຜະຫ​ລິດ​ກະ​ສີ​ກຳ, ​ປັບ​ປຸງ ແລະ ບັງຄັບໃຊ້ ​ບັນ​ຊີສານ​ເຄ​ມີ​ທີ່​ຫ້າມ​ໃຊ້​ໃນ ສ​ປ​ປ ລາວ.

ລັດ​ຖະ​ບານ​ຍັງ​ຄວນ​ຈະຕ້ອງແນະ​ນຳ​ໃຫ້ພາກ​ສ່ວນ​ທີ່​ກ່ຽວ​ຂ້ອງ​ສ້າງ​ຂີດ​ຄວາມ​ສາ​ມາດ​ໃຫ້​ອຳນາດການປົກຄອງຂັ້ນ​ເມືອງ​ໃນ​ການ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ປະ​ຕິ​ບັດ​, ການຕິດຕາມກວດ​ກາມ, ຄຸ້ມ​ຄອງ​ພາກ​ທຸ​ລະ​ກິດ​ປູກ​ຫມາກ​ກ້ວຍ​ແລະ​ສ້າງກົນ​ໄກ​ການ​ມີ​ສ່ວນ​ຮ່ວມຂອງ​ຂັ້ນ​ບ້ານ​ແລະ​ຂັ້ນ​ເມືອງ​ໃນ​ການ​ອະ​ນຸ​ມັດ​ສຳ​ປະ​ທານ​ທຸ​ລະ​ກິດ​ກະ​ສີິກຳ​. ພາກ​ສ່ວນ​ທີ່ກ່ຽວ​ຂ້ອງ​ຍັງ​ຄວນ​ສ້າງ​ຂີດ​ຄວາມ​ສາ​ມາດ​ໃຫ້​ຄະ​ນະ​ຄຸ້ມ​ຄອງ​ການ​ລົງ​ທືນ​ຂັ້ນ​ແຂວງ​ຜູ້​ທີ່ເປັນ​ເສ​ນາ​ທິ​ການ​ໃຫ້​ເຈົ້າ​ແຂວງ​ໃນ​ການ​ອະ​ນຸ​ມັດ​ການ​ລົງ​ທຶນ​ອີງ​ຕາມ​ພາ​ລະ​ບົດ​ບາດ​ຂອງ​ຕົນ​. ຄວນ​ຢຸດ​ເຊົາ​ການ​ປູກ​ກ້ວຍ​ທີ່ເຫັນ​ວ່າ​ມີ​ຜົນ​ກະ​ທົບ​ທາງ​ລົບ​ຕໍ​ສີ່ງ​ແວດ​ລ້ອມ​ແລະ​ສັງ​ຄົມ​ໃນ​ຂະ​ນະ​ດຽວ​ກັນ​ຄວນ​ສົ່ງ​ເສີມ​ແລະ ຍ້ອງ​ຍໍ​ຜູ້​ທີ່​ເປັນ​ເຮັດໄດ້​ດີ. ລັດ​ຖະ​ບານ​ຄວນ​ໂຈະ​ການ​ໃຫ້ສຳ​ປະ​ທານ​ປູກ​ກ້ວຍ100ເປີເຊັນ. ລັດຖະບານຍັງຄວນ ແບ່ງ​ງົບ​ປະ​ມານສຳລັບ​ການ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວາ​ແລະການສຶກສາ ເພື່ອກຳນົດມາດຕະຖານດ້ານເຕັກນິກ ແລະ ເຕັກນິກ ທີ່ໃຊ້ເຂົ້າໃນການຜະລິດ ​ເພື່ອ​ເປັນ​ບ່ອນ​ອີງ​ໃຫ້​ແກ່​ການ​ອະ​ນຸ​ມັດ​ແລະ​ທົດ​ສອ​ບ​ຜົນ​ກະ​ທົບ​ອັນ​ຍາວ​​ທາງ​ດ້ານ​ສຸ​ຂະ​ພາບຂອງຄົນ​ແລະ​ສີ່ງ​ແວດ​ລ້ອມ. ເພືອ​ບັນລຸການປັບປຸງໃນທາງບວກ ​ມັນ​ຮຽກ​ຮ້ອງມີ​ການ​ຮ່ວມ​ມືອັນດີ​ຈາກ​ຂະ​ແຫນງ​ການ​ທີ່​ກ່ຽວ​ຂ້ອງຕ່າງໆ, ມີ ງົບ​ປະມານ​ໃນ​ການ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງປະ​ຕິ​ບັດແລະ​ການ​ຊ່ວຍ​ເຫລືອຈາກ​ອົງ​ການ​ຈັດ​ຕັ້ງ​ສາ​ກົນ​ຕ່າງ​ໆໃນ​ລາວ. ຜະລິດຕະພັນສີນ​ຄ້າ​ໝາກ​ກ້ວຍ​ໄດ້ເລີ້ມ​ຕົ້ນ​ໃນ​ປະ​ເທດ​ປີ 2005 ໂດຍ​ສະ​ເພາະ​ແຂວງ​ຫລວງ​ນ້ຳ​ທາ​ທີ່ ເກີດມີຫຼາຍຕົວແບບທີ່​ມີ​ການ​ລົງ​ທຶນ​ຮ່ວມ​ກັນເຊັ່ນ:1+4, 2+3ແລະ​ ສຳ​ປະ​ທານ 100 ເປີ​ເຊັນ​. ຍັງມີຄວາມເປັນຫ່ວງ ກ່ຽວກັບຜົນ​ກະ​ທົບ​ທາງສະພາບແວດລ້ອມ ແລະ ສັງຄົມ ຈາກ​ການ​ປູກ​ໝາກ​ກ້ວຍ​ ຍ້ອນມາດຕະຖານຄຸ້ມຄອງ ແລະ ລະບົບຕິດຕາມກວດກາຍັງຕໍ່າ, ໂດຍສະເພາະແມ່ນບໍລິສັດທີ່ປູກກ້ວຍເອງ. ການລົງທຶນ​ປູກ​ກ້ວຍ​ໄດ້​ສ້າງ​ລາຍ​ຮັບ​ໃຫ້​ແກ່​ປະ​ຊາ​ຊົນ​ໃນ​ທ້ອງ​ຖີ່ນ​ແຕ່​ມັນ​ກໍ່ໄຫ້ເກີດມີຫຼາຍບັນຫາຂື້ນ ທີ່ກ່ຽວຂ້ອງກັບ ສະພາບແວດລ້ອມ ແລະ ສຸກຂະພາບຂອງຄົນ. ​ທ່ານ ດຣ. ບຸນ​ທອງ ບົວ​ຫອມ ຫົວ​ຫນ້າ​ສະ​ຖາ​ບັນ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວາ​ກະ​ສີ​ກຳ​ແລະ​ປ່າ​ໄມ້​ແຫ່ງ​ຊາດ​ເວົ້າ​ວ່າ: ບົດ​ຄົ້ນ​ຄົ້ວາ​ນີ້​ເປັນ​ຂໍ້​ມູນ​ອັນດີ​ໃຫ້​ແກ່ລັດຖະບານ ແລະ ​​ຂະ​ແຫນງ​ການ​ທີ່ກ່ຽວ​ຂ້ອງ​ໃນ​ການ​ຊອກ​ຫາ​ວິ​ທີ​ແກ້​ໄຂ​ບັນ​ຫາ​ແລະ​ວາງ​ນະ​ໂຍ​ບາຍດ້ານ​ອຸດ​ສາ​ຫະ​ກຳທີ່​ດີ​ກ່​ວາ​ໃນ​ອະ​ນາ​ຄົດ.​


Research team proposes better banana plantation management

Vientiane Times, April 4, 2016.

An agricultural research team has called for the government to formulate and enforce policies and measures to manage banana plantation investments in Laos after they were shown to have negative impacts on society and the environment. The team from the National Agriculture and Forestry Research Institute (NAFRI) and the National University of Laos recently conducted a study on banana plantations, supported by various international organisations. Its recommendations include the formulation of appropriate market policies in order to avoid the risks of failing prices and policy implementation for the proper enforcement of environmental laws.

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