The Phou Phanang National Conversation Area is a protected national park, with logging illegal under an order issued by the Mayor of Vientiane Capital on 18 August this year.
An official form the Lao Ministry of Mines stated that the government had not received a formal notice from the Thai Energy Ministry indicating that officials were not going to sign PPAs from the four Lao dams. “If Thailand doesn’t buy electricity from those four dams, we’ll sell it to China, Vietnam, and Cambodia,” said the official.
There is a huge gap between the value of Chinese investments in Laos and the negative impacts they create, a legal advisor said, adding, “No one can express concerns about these things in public out of fear for their safety.” Further, added a Lao businessman, also speaking on condition of anonymity. “It makes no sense to just tell people the high value of Chinese investments,”
Pollution is a public health major risk that slows economic growth. Environmental health risks result in around 10,000 deaths each year — over 20% of total deaths in Laos — and cause more than 100 million days of illness.
The company’s management of the sea trade route will be significant in supporting the Lao government’s effort to transform landlocked Laos to become a land-linked one and boosting connectivity within the region and beyond.
The government believes the US$5 billion project in Vientiane will significantly boost the country’s economic growth and generate job opportunities for local people. Upon completion, the 99-year concession project will encompass a residential area, public parks and green spaces, a lake, a hospital, an education centre, restaurants, a sports complex, and a commercial centre.
The $31 million Enhancing Systematic Land Registration Project will be run by the government’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment over the next five years. Its objective is to modernize land administration and scale up land registration to support the country’s aim of extending the benefits of recognized land rights to more of the Lao population.
Significance lies in environmental and ecological protection by using the same building standards and cutting-edge technology utilized in China to decrease environmental risks, while the electricity transmission pole project has helped train local people in grid operation and management with the goal of creating jobs and assuring power supply.
Construction of the project began in June 2016, at a total value of USD 1.335 billion, with a 70 percent loan from a Thai banking group and a 30 percent contribution from stakeholders.
Mekong Blues (Laos) – Hydropower dams on the lower Mekong in Laos would threaten the future of the world’s most productive freshwater fisheries, the stability of the densely populated delta, and the river’s biodiversity – including critically endangered river dolphins and Mekong giant catfish. 60 million people depend on the health of the lower Mekong.