Low relocation compensation slows down VND6.8 trillion power project
  • By Quang Anh-Nguyen Duy | | December 01, 2011 12:18 PM

The site clearance of a VND6.8 trillion (USD323.8 million) power project in Nghe An Province has seen almost no progress, due to low compensation.

Slow construction of resettlement areas

The site clearance and resettlement of Hua Na Hydropower Project is scheduled to be completed before March 2012, but the compensation is too not adequate to persuade residents to move to resettlement areas.

The 180MW-project in Que Phong District, investor Hua Na Hydropower Joint Stock Company, broke ground in January, 2008.

To carry out the project, more than 4,700 people of 1,326 households of two communes of Dong Van and Thong Thu would have to move to resettlement areas. However, to date, just about 200 of those have actually moved.

The investor blamed the stagnant site clearance on difficult terrain which affects the resettlement. According to the company, locals have to go through waterfalls and rapids and a distance of between 30-40km to the resettlement places.

Lang Van Tuan, Chairman of Dong Van Commune People’s Committee, blamed the reason for the reluctance of people to move squarely on the low compensation rates.

He added that, the district’s site clearance board and the Hua Na Hydropower Joint Stock Company are offering the people of Dong Van Commune of just VND500 per (USD0.023) per square metre for forest land, and VND40,000 (USD1.9) per square metre of residential land. A number of households received a total VND200 million (USD9,523), while others received only VND70 million (USD3,333). These figures were based on appraisals made in 2008, despite the fact that the compensations were made in 2010. 

Sluggish construction in resettlement areas

The investor planned to build 16 resettlement areas for project. Dong Van Commune has four resettlement areas, which were supposed to be built at the project's inception. However the construction pace has been slow.

For example, the Nam Nui-Nam Ke resettlement area, whose construction began in March 2011, has not even been fully cleared.

A number of other resettlement areas that have been completed have been shunned by people because they are not adequate for their lifestyles. 

According to Mr. Tuan, the district authority had planned to provide each household with an area of at least 800 square metres, but in fact the largest was only around 300 square metres. This, he said, does not provide them with enough space for breeding and the building of decent hygienic facilities. One water well would have to be shared by 10 to 15 households. 

Also, children from six villages in Dong Van would not have access to schools. These students would have to attend classes in neighbouring areas. 

Truong Minh Cuong, Vice Chairman of Que Phong District People’s Committee and Head of the local site clearance board, said, "The district is actively encouraging locals to move to resettlement areas, and will deal with the infrastructure problems later."

Huoi Siu-Huoi Lan resettlement area still underway 

Site clearance of Dong Van Commune’s settlement areas have just finished

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