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EPF lending 8.5 b kip conservation support to provinces

The Environmental Protection Fund (EPF) has budgeted over 8.5 billion kip to support its environmental protection activities in seven target provinces of the country.

A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was officially signed for the initiative yesterday in Vientiane between President of the EPF, Mr Khampadith Khammounheaung and representatives from the seven target provinces.

The signing ceremony was attended by Director General of the Department of Planning and International Cooperation under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment, Dr Saynakhone Inthavong

The project aims to strengthen environmental protection and sustainable natural resource management in the target provinces of Luang Prabang, Huaphan, Xieng Khuang, Vientiane, Borikhamxay, Khammuan and Savannakhet.

The provinces targeted have ample natural resources and valuable preserved wildlife habitats, according to a leading official.

Speaking at the signing ceremony, President of the EPF, Mr Khampadith Khammounheaung said, “The project will run for three years from 2017 to 2020 to promote capacity development in environmental protection for government officials at the Department of Natural Resources and Environment in the seven targets provinces.”

“These projects will ensure the proper dissemination of information pertaining to their activities and operations among the local people of the seven target provinces,” he said.

The projects aim to improve and promote environmental protection by providing relevant data and information, raising public awareness and providing education to the citizens so that they see the importance of the environment in their daily lives.

“This includes encouraging and supporting the strict implementation of policies, laws and regulations on the environment,” he added.

Mr Khampadith explained the projects included strengthening environmental protection and sustainable natural resource use which supported the government's policy reform agenda towards improved environmental management.

They will also examine the relationships between ‘developed' and ‘developing' societies, the roles played by various institutions within them and their effects on the processes of social, political, economic and environmental transformation. Dr Saynakhone Inthavong said the EPF provided funding to manage trails and lands, protect natural resources, preserve wildlife habitats, make critical capital improvements about conservation, and allow access for local people.

He said the provinces would also gather information on the environment in relation to socio–economic issues and address the need to mainstream environmental and social safeguards in infrastructure development.

“It will also aim to strengthen biodiversity conservation in district Protected Area management and provide support for communities in sustainable environmental management activities,” he said.

The provinces will also provide information on the administration and protection of the natural environment to environmental experts.

According to the EPF, the fund was established in 2005 as a financially autonomous organisation to strengthen environmental protection, sustainable natural resources management, biodiversity conservation and community development in Laos.



By Phetphoxay Sengpaseuth
(Latest Update July 21, 2017)

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