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Archive for the ‘English Language / ພາສາອັງກິດ’ Category

Bokeo Governor imposes ban on expansion of banana farms

By Phetsamone

(KPL) The Governor of Bokeo Province Khamphanh Pheuyavong has imposed a ban on the further expansion of banana plantations invested in by foreign investors in the province. The area of banana plantation investments by foreign companies currently stands at over 10,000 ha.  “Impacts on the environment and nearby communities partly results from the fact that relevant government authorities failed to carry out proper management and monitoring of the issue. As a result, chemical fertilizers and harmful herbicides and pesticides have been used by foreign investors,” said Governor Khamphanh Pheuyavong.

Land concessions for development continue in Vientiane

Vientiane Times, March 30, 2016.

The Vientiane Planning and Investment Department reports that it has approved land concession agreements for local and foreign investors from 2010 until the present totaling more than 7.65 trillion kip (almost US$945 million) and the figure is expected to keep increasing.
The department reported recently that it had approved investments of 1,488.33 hectares for 39 development projects in the districts of Xaysettha, Chanthabouly, Sikhottabong, Sisattanak, Xaythany, Hadxaifong, Naxaithong and Sangthong.

The Global Call to Action has now been launched!

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Newsletter Global Call to Action – 2 March 2016

The Global Call to Action on Indigenous and Community Land Rights around the globe! Right now, hundreds of people like you, activists, organizations and communities are hosting events, sharing tweets, and taking actions to make the Global Call to Action a success — find out what’s happening here. Don’t miss the opportunity and be part of the movement!

Common Ground: Securing land rights and safeguarding the earth
Our flagship report is out! Download it and get more information about why we need to take action now to secure Indigenous and community land rights.

Inspectors uncover widespread illegal logging, vehicle imports

Vientiane Times, March 2, 2016

Inspection authorities have uncovered more than 86,744 cubic metres of illegal logs, the illegal importation of 978 vehicles, and also discovered banking officials taking customers’ money, during inspections carried out in 2015. The illegal logs were found after the authorities investigated suspicious incidents in 12 provinces and Vientiane, according to the 2015 report from the Inspection Committee of the Party Central Committee, and the Government Inspection Authority.

Regional experts mull solutions to land governance challenges

Vientiane Times 24th February 2016

Experts are seeking to design innovative solutions to land-related challenges in Laos, Cambodia, Myanmar and Vietnam by discussing the experiences of the four Mekong countries. More than 80 people representing over 30 organisations from six countries in South East Asia are taking part in a regional stakeholders’ consultation workshop in Vientiane from February 23-24. The meeting is considering coordinated responses and priority areas for joint collaboration on issues of land governance.

Free legal aid continues at Lao Bar Association

Vientiane Times, February 12, 2016

Train CLE to the Village Leader in Luangnamtha and Oudomxay Province

By: Pangthong Xayyavong, FLP CLE Lecturer and Pavina Thephithuck, Senior Legal Fellow

On the 24th January to 2nd February 2016, The Faculty of Law and Political Science Clinical Legal Education(FLP CLE) had been to the North of Laos, Luangnamtha and Oudomxay Province to do a 2days Training of Trainer (Each District) to the 29 Village Leader, in 3 District which are from Sing District, Luangnamtha Province and Lar and Namor District in Oudomxay Province. Which were support by Care International Oganization. More than 261 Village Leader attend the workshop. In this member of participants are include: Head of the Village, Duty Head of the Village, Woman’s union, Elderly, Police of the Village, Land unit in the village, Youth unit and Village mediation unit.

Agriculture ministry to pursue three focal targets

Vientiane Times, February 2, 2016

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has announced it will pursue three focal targets set to ensure food security, greater commercial production and sustainable forestry management. In its five-year plan provided recently, the ministry revealed the first target is to secure food production with sufficient nutrition. In this regard, the ministry will pursue the annual production of 2.5 million tonnes of paddy rice via government-introduced food security projects. Of which, between 200,000 and 400,000 tonnes will be stockpiled as national reserve.

Another target is for the production of the five food groups to reach an average of 2,600 kilocalories per person per day. In addition, the ministry has announced, as identified in the second target, to produce more commodities with better quality on a commercial basis with focus on producing clean and organic farm products. The ministry said organic farm produce were in high demand in markets of other Asean member countries, China, Japan and the Republic of Korea. Foodstuffs production has increased in recent years paving the way to attain the set target, thanks to incentive policies and regulations introduced to facilitate production. Nationwide production of rice increased from just 3.06 million tonnes in 2011 to 4.2 million tonnes in 2015, which enabled Laos to export some surplus. Production of other foodstuffs increased from 1.23 million tonnes in 2011 to 1.41 million tonnes in 2015.
Domestic average annual production and supply of meats, chickens and eggs increased from 48 kilograms per person in 2011 to 55 kilograms per person in 2015 meeting the targeted plan.
As a result, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations certified in 2015 that Laos had achieved millennium development goal I (MDG 1) on eradicating extreme poverty and hunger. Zoning projects have been established to promote clean and organic production of crops such as coffee, cassava, jobs tear, bananas, rice, and watermelons among others. Notably, Laos has started to export rice to China and is expected to increase these exports to 8,000 tonnes in the immediate future generating income of US$6 million (more than 48.4 billion kip). Livestock farms have increased in number, highlighted by a Japanese investor’s large and modern farm in XiengKhuang province to rear thousands of head of cattle. In a move to ensure sustainable management of forests, a survey has been completed to facilitate the allocation of 51 production forest areas. Allocation of production forest will assist logging plans. The ministry said it would continue to complete the allocation of production forest areas and village forest areas across the country to facilitate sustainable forestry management.

Northern provinces hit by extreme cold snap

Vientiane Times, January 26, 2016.

Land owners notified of compensation for highway project

Vientiane Times, December 23, 2015

The Vientiane Natural Resources and Environment Department has announced that compensation will be awarded to people who have had their land appropriated to enable a 9.5km road to be built through the That Luang marsh. The construction of this road in Vientiane begins in Donnokkhoum village, passes through the marsh to Xiengda village and links to the 450 Year Road.

Forty owners of land on a section of the new road being built in Xiengda village were named on a list of people to be compensated by the department as their parcels of land were affected by the project. The state publicly released the information on December 16. An official from the Vientiane Natural Resources and Environment Department, who asked not to be named, told Vientiane Times on Tuesday that some houses in Xiengda village were affected but most of the land was used for agriculture. All of these parcels of land have been included in the compensation package, he said. The land along this road is affected because a swathe of land 200 metres wide on either side of the road was sold off by the government to cover the cost of the road’s construction, under the policy of converting land into capital. However some people who lost their land to the project have yet to come forward to claim compensation and others still have not received a payout.
The road is being built in three phases. Once complete, it will be 25 metres wide, not including sidewalks. The first stage sees the road connecting Donnokkhoum village to Kamphaengmeuang Road in Donkoi village. The second phase links Kamphaengmeuang Road to Xiengda village across the marsh and the third section of the road runs from Xiengda village to the 450 Year Road. The cost of the 9.5 km highway is estimated at more than US$150 million. It is being built by the Namtha Road-Bridge Construction Company. Vientiane decided to build the new highway to expand urban development outwards and reduce traffic congestion in the city centre. The new road will play an important role in contributing to socio-economic growth. The daughter of Mrs Lom, who is on the list to receive compensation, said her mother owned over one hectare of rice fields in Xiengda village. Some people recently asked to buy the land for US$115 (about 933,000 kip) per square metre but she did not sell it because the land was located alongside the new road. She was shocked when she saw her name on the department’s list for compensation for converting the 200 metres of land along each side of the road because it awarded her only US$10 (about 80,000 kip) per metre, or less than one tenth of what she could have sold it for.
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