ASEAN Grassroots Peoples Assembly
Myanmar (Burma) was one of the ASEAN member states for which concern was expressed on issues related to investment, especially in natural resources. Myanmar as we know, has abandoned natural resource reform and instead is focusing on the state. Investment in Myanmar includes: hydroelectric dams, mining, and timber. All of the investors come with no standards for investment. It really impacts the people, especially the ethic groups of Myanmar. As was said, the companies cutting timber cause a loss of livelihood and land among the people, which is a violation. It results in no food, destroyed natural resources, and so on.
The impact of palm oil plantations in Indonesia, which increased greatly during the 1980s abd 1990s, is also a concern for local people. In order to develop the plantations, the government needs 1.2 million hectares (ha) to plant more. So to plant more of palm oil, forests must be cut down, and is likely to overlap with the farmland of local people. To note, that there are about 9.5million ha owned by foreign investors. Moreover the government plans to increase the number of plantations to about 20 million ha.
– Khim Vathanea