Monday, 09 December 2019

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Kyaukphyu residents issue new demands to govt, CNPC

Maday Islanders march to the CNPC office on Thursday to issue a list of demands and register their displeasure with the company's oil and gas pipeline project. Photo: Thein Hlaing / Mizzima
Social organizations and local residents living in 17 villages of Kyaukphyu Township in Rakhine State issued a fresh list of demands on Thursday to the Myanmar government and to the backers of a controversial oil and gas pipeline project, China’s state-run China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC). 

The locals issued a list of 12 demands directly involved with the running and approval of the 1,100-km pipeline which CNPC expects will begin transferring natural gas from the Bay of Bengal to China’s southwestern Yunnan province in June.

According to Tun Lwin of the Kyaukphyu Social Network, the Kyaukphyu residents are demanding:

  • that it be established whether the authorities have in fact carried out an efficient environmental impact assessment (EIA) and social impact assessment (SIA);
  • if the impact assessments have not been carried out, then the project must be suspended immediately. Once a credible EIA and SIA have been carried out, then the public must be made aware of the report, which should include recommendations about the company’s responsibility to be accountable and liable for explosions and other accidents;
  • that the Myanmar authorities must arrange compensation for those residents whose lands were confiscated to make way for the pipeline project and deep-sea port;
  • to create jobs for locals;
  • to pay salaries on a par with international standards;
  • and to promote development on the island.

Protesters in Maday had earlier this month issued similar demands, the essential difference between the two statements being the proviso that an EIA and an SIA are undertaken and made transparent.

Tun Lwin said that two letters have been signed by representatives of all 17 affected townships, as well as the Kyaukphyu Social Network, the KY Youth Organization and Maday Island Development Association, and sent to Myanmar President Thein Sein and the CNPC.

For more background:
  1. Chinese predict June opening for Burma pipeline 
  2. Maday Islanders protest Chinese pipeline 
  3. CNPC denies firing workers on Maday Island