Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Ye stages protest against plan for building Andin coal-fired power plant

Weekly Eleven  May 5, 2015

Taninthayi - The local people in Yay Township, Taninthayi Region, staged a protest against the plan for the construction of Andin coal-fired power plant project on May 5.

The protest was staged in the sports ground of Andin village, attended by more than 6,000 local people at 7 am on that day and ended at 9 am. It took about two hours.

“This project will be implemented by [Thai-Japanese] Toyo Thai Company and the company doesn’t have transparency. The company from Myanmar that will cooperate with Toyo Thai bought land plots for the proposed project area before the start of the project. The administrators of ours do not know the purchase of land plots. Both of the companies don’t have transparency. Traditions and customs as well as conventional farming can disappear due to this project. For that reason, we stage the protest,” Aung Lin, a Andin resident, told The Daily Eleven.

On the occasion, Buddhist monks from Andin gave advice. Protest leader Aung Lin, Naing Soe Paing of Yay Township social service organization, Min Aung Htoo of civil society organization and Mon State MP Dr Aung Naing Oo held talks on the coal-fired power project.

“First we must seek the approval of the local people if we start a project. The international community and Myanmar have already recognised it. The project is developing amidst the criticism of the local people. It was suspected that the government was honest,” Min Aung Htoo of civil society organisation said.  

“As far as we know, the local people don’t have the desire to stage the protest. We consider that the project will be out of question without seeking the approval of the local people. When the Union government signs the MoU, local Buddhist monks and people met with the authorities. When asking about the project, the Union government said that the project would not materialize without seeking the approval of the local people. But the Union government signed the contract amidst the criticism regardless of the wishes of the local people. Therefore, tempers began to fray. The Union government seemed to insult the local people,” Mon State MP Dr Aung Naing Oo said.

The Ministry of Electric Power and Toyo-Thai signed MoU on the construction of Andin coal-fired power plant on March 23 in 2013 and MoA on April 9 in 2015, according to Website of Toyo-Thai Company.

[Thailand-based Toyo-Thai Corporation Public Company Limited (TTCL) was incorporated in 1985 through a joint venture of Italian-Thai Development Public Company Limited, one of Thailand’s biggest contractors, and Toyo Engineering Corporation, a leading international engineering company based in Japan. TTCL is a major player in the development of Map Ta Phut - October 2006: Awarded EPC Contract for a world scale Ethane Cracker Plant in Thailand • December 2006: Awarded EPC Contracts for two world scale polyethylene plants in Thailand ]

[Toyo-Thai: a Power Industry Pioneer in Myanmar In the power arena, Mr. Hironobu Iriya  personally led negotiations with the government of Myanmar and achieved great success, in the face a stiff competition, when Toyo-Thai was contracted to build a 140 MW power plant in Yangon, Myanmar in 2012. The plant was online and generating 40 MW of electric power after only five months, a remarkable achievement. Completion is expected by the second half of 2014. Myanmar is seen as holding tremendous potential for business and industry as it comes out of decades of isolation – and Toyo-Thai is very proud of its achievements in that country while many of the world’s premier corporations have yet to make inroads there. Toyo-Thai has also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Myanmar’s Ministry of Electric Power to conduct a year-long preliminary survey and feasibility study with an eye to building a 1,000 MW Ultra Supercritical Coal-Fired Power Plant in Thiliwa Special Economic Zone, Yangon]