Govt promises appropriate compensation in railway project
Compensation payouts to the owners of land and other property that will be lost when the Laos-China railway is built will be dispensed under a prime ministerial decree, a senior government official has said.
Deputy Minister of Public Works and Transport, Mr Lattanamany Khounnivong, said last week that a plus-three policy would be used to calculate the amount of compensation awarded.
Explaining the policy, the deputy minister said Prime Ministerial Decree No. 135 issued on May 25, 2009, would be used as a basic reference plus an actual estimation of the value of the property plus negotiations with the people affected, to calculate the amount of the compensation and satisfy all the parties involved.
The amount of compensation to be awarded for each category of property, such as a house, other building and land, is specified in the decree.
This specified amount will be used as the basic reference, along with the other two considerations mentioned above.
“That is why a mediation team has been set up [to deal with the issue'],” Mr Lattanamany said during an interview with Lao National Television on Friday, which was attended by reporters from various media outlets.
The entire compensation package is part of the 38.7 billion yuan (US$6.04 billion) investment cost.
Deputy Prime Minister Somsavat Lengsavad, who is in charge of the project, told the National Assembly recently that compensation should be paid within an appropriate timeframe, saying it should not be delayed until the project is complete.
The 427-km railway will link Vientiane with the Chinese border and will pass through urban areas in several provinces. Mr Lattanamany said it was inevitable that the track would affect houses, buildings and land owned by local people.
Authorities in charge are collecting information on the actual land and properties that will be affected by the project.
A total area of 3,058 hectares will be required for the railway and its associated facilities.
Of this area, 50 metres of land along each side of the railway will be kept free and fenced off for safety reasons, while other parcels of land will be required to build stations. The largest station, in Vientiane, will require 1.5 million square metres of land, while the smallest station on the route will require about 400,000 square metres.
According to the plan, there will be 11 stations for passenger use. Two will be built in the Boten and Nateuy areas of Luang Namtha province, while three will be built in Oudomxay's Namor, Xay and Nga districts.
Two more stations will be built in Luang Prabang and Xieng-ngeun districts in Luang Prabang province. Three will be constructed in Kasy, Vangvieng and Phonhong districts in Vientiane province and the main station will be in Vientiane. A goods transport depot will also be built in Vientiane.
Construction of the railway is expected to be complete within five years.
By Times Reporters
(Latest Update Janaury 5, 2016)