Working towards greater community control over land, forests and natural resources

Posts Tagged ‘concession’

15 mining projects see concessions revoked

Source: Vientiane Times,5May,2017

Fifteen mining operations have had their concessions revoked after investors failed to implement their projects as agreed after they were granted concessions by the government.
Speaking at the ongoing ordinary session of the National Assembly last week, Minister of Energy and Mines DrKhammanyInthirath said “Some companies just held [concessions without implementing them] purely in order to resell them.”
The government suspended consideration of new mining projects a few years ago, saying it wanted to take steps to better regulate the mining industry after learning that a number of projects had failed to observe the agreements they had signed with the government.
DrKhammany said his officials began carrying out inspections in 2016 and found that almost 20 mining operations were not in compliance with the agreements and stood to lose their concessions.
The findings were submitted to the Ministry of Planning and Investment, which subsequently annulled the concessions previously awarded to 15 projects.
The fate of other projects that comply poorly with agreements is currently under consideration, DrKhammany added.
As of 2016, some 657 companies had been granted permission to carry out surveys and excavation as part of 942 projects. Of these, 226 companies had been authorised by the central government to undertake 392 projects.
Since 2003, when investment in mining began, until 2016, the sale value of mineral commodities exceeded US$13 billion with almost US$2 billion in taxes and royalties paid to the government, DrKhammany said.
He added that the mining sector had boomed and generated huge revenues from 2011-2016 driven by the spiralling of commodity prices on the world market, especially gold and copper, in 2012. The sale value of mining products from 2011-2016 hit US$8.8 billion with US$1.2 billion in taxes paid. Prior to that, from 2003-2010, the sale value of mining products was just US$4.3 billion with US$688 million paid in taxes.
DrKhammany said the sale value of minerals took a dive in 2016 when commodity prices on the world market slumped, including gold and copper.
In the first nine months of 2016, the sale value was just US$964 million, generating only US$41 million in taxes.
“The sale value [of mineral products] for the whole of 2016 was less than US$100 million. The sale value depends on the market price of minerals,” DrKhammany said.

Don Sahong dam critical for development of southern Laos

Vientiane Times, November 3, 2015.

Food for thought

Bangkok Post 25th May 2015 – Business News

Childhood nutrition remains poor in Laos, where allocation of large land concessions to investors could be one factor undermining food security
For more details please read article in the below link:

http://www.bangkokpost.com/business/news/571871/food-for-thought

Switzerland, Germany pledge US$12m for land governance

Vientiane Times, March 16, 2015

The government of Switzerland, represented by the Swiss Agency for Development (SDC), and the Lao government, represented by the Ministry of Planning and Investment, on Friday launched the Mekong Regional L and Governance Project in Laos.  The project, which is planned for a period of eight years, will received financial support from the Swiss government amounting to US$8 million (65.2 billion kip), and from the German government through the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), amounting to 3.5 million euros (about US$3.7 million or 30 billion kip). Secretary of State for the Swiss Confederation, Mr Manuel Sager, and Lao Deputy Minister of Planning and Investment, Dr Kikeo Chanthaboury, signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the launch of the project. The project is an initiative to support land tenure security for family farmers, especially women and ethnic groups, by assisting the emergence of more favourable policies and practices, according to a press release.

Locals encroach on Bokeo forest conservation area

Vientiane Times, February 09, 2015

The National Forest Conservation Area in Nam Kan, Bokeo province, is suffering from encroachment by local people and business operators who fell trees and hunt wildlife there, with local authorities unable to control these activities. In an article published in the Lao Economic Daily Newspaper on February 6, reporters said they had investigated this problem a few years ago. At that time they had reported on use of the conservation area for slash and burn cultivation, logging and hunting.

Attapeu folk continue to unearth alabaster despite ban

Vientiane Times, 23 Oct 2014

The high sale price of alabaster has brought local people flocking to Phoukanghong Mountain in Attapeu province, where they have been digging up blocks of the mineral to sell, despite a government ban on its removal. Locals told Vientiane Times yesterday that villagers were continuing to remove the rocks illegally and with great enthusiasm, as if celebrating a festival.

Govt mulls revoking 12 project concessions

Vientiane Times, 10 December 2013

The government will consider revoking concessions for eight mining projects and four industrial tree plantation projects whose concession holders have failed to comply with the relevant laws and the terms of the concession agreements, a minister has told the parliament.

Mr Somdy Duangdy.

Minister of Planning and Investment Somdy Duangdy told the National Assembly’s sixth ordinary session which opened yesterday, that the ministry will propose to a higher authority to consider the revocations.

Chinese agricultural firm looking to invest in Champassak

Vientiane Times, 7 December 2013,

A large Chinese investor is looking to secure a concession for 10,000 hectares of land on the Bolaven plateau in Champassak province for rice, small crops and cattle raising, according to provincial officials.

The Planning and Investment Department in Champassak province signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Chinese company Beidahuang earlier this week, allowing it to commence a survey and study of the area.

“We will allow them to undertake a survey on 10,000 hectares of land in the province,” the Deputy Director of the department, Mr Bounthien Phiasakha, toldVientiane Times on Friday.

Economists warn Laos on rubber

*Vientiane Times, 3 Oct 2013*

Economists are warning that establishing more rubber plantations will not only harm the environment but also affect long-term food security in Laos.

A senior economist from the National Economic Research Institute, Dr Leeber Leebouapao, told Vientiane Times on Monday there was an oversupply of rubber on the global market, causing the price to fall.

“We should stop planting rubber trees and use our land to grow other crops to ensure food security,” he added.

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