Working towards greater community control over land, forests and natural resources
(ກຸ່ມເຮັດວຽກກ່ຽ່ວກັບບັນຫາການນຳໃຊ້ທີ່ດິນ) ແນ່ໃສ່ສົ່ງເສີ່ມ ຄວາມເຂົ້າໃຈ ແລະຄວາມຮູ້ທ່ວງທັນ ໃນດ້ານ ເສດຖະກິດສັງຄົມ ສິງແວດລອມ ທີ່ກ່ຽວຂອງກັບການນຳໃຊ້ເນື້ອທີ່ດິນ ໃນໂຄງການ ຕ່າງໆ, ໂດຍການເກັບກຳ ແລະ ແຜ່ກະຈາຍ ຂໍ້ມູນ ຂ່າວສານ, ການຊຸກຍູ້ການສົນທະນາປຶກສາຫາລື ແລະ ການຄົ້ນຄວ້າວິໃຈ

New issue brief on land, nutrition and food security

LIWG, 15 July 2014

The Land Issues Working Group has published a new issue brief on the linkages between secure land tenu

Kids at playre, and improved food security and nutrition. The document highlights that secure tenure over land is a critical but often overlooked factor in a

chieving household food security and improved nutritional status. Land is necessary for growing food, and there is significant evidence that land tenure insecurity is an important underlying cause of food insecurity. Including land rights in programs and policies designed to address food security and nutrition can deepen the impact of those interventions, and lead to improved development outcomes. You can download the full document here (in English and in Lao)
.

Expropriation: Recommendations to draft National Land Policy

LIWG, 12 June 2014

In a recent meeting of the Natural Resources and Environment Sector Working Group (NRE-SWG), the Land Tenure Security informal focal group, along with several meeting participants, raised concerns over the wording in the recent National Land Policy draft. The February 2014 draft of the Policy specifically gives the State the right to expropriate land for private investment purposes, i.e. not only for public purposes.

The Land Tenure Security focal group is concerned that, if approved, the draft policy will undermine tenure security and risks the following impacts:

Planting campaign to conserve mountain’s abundant forest

Vientiane Times, 2 June 2014

Hundreds of people joined in planting trees to conserve forest in Vientiane’s Sangthong district, which covers part of the Phouphanang National Protected Area. District Governor Mr B ounthieng Khounsy led officials from Vientiane’s Department of Agriculture and Forestry, Department of Natural Resources and Environment, local police, military forces, local residents and students in planting around 2,000 native saplings on around two hectares of land on Lanmanh Hill near Samphanna village.

Better coordination needed in allocating land concessions

Vientiane Times, 28 May 2014

Lease concessions for state land are causing confusion among some foreign investors who are not sure whether they require documentation to be issued at the central or local levels of government. Generally, concessions of state land over 150 hectares for planting crops such as cassava and rubber trees are granted by the central level whereas less than this is processed at the local level.

Illegal logging encroaching onto private lands

Vientiane Times, 26 May 2014

Trees on privately held land have become a target for illegal loggers as the stocks of trees dwindle in natural forests on state owned land. One local businessman named Mr Khamphay Sonsana who had some valuable trees stolen from his forest, spoke to Vientiane Timeson Friday about the current situation of the timber trade and concerns among members of the public.

LIWG Supports Development of the Lao National Land Policy

LIWG, 23 May 2014

The long term LIWG work in supporting the development of the Lao National Land Policy (NLP) has continued over the past months, in cooperation with partners and stakeholders. Through extensive analysis, consultation, and research into international best practice, the LIWG has further developed its recommendations to the NLP, with the aim of enhancing utilization of land for the economic, social, cultural and spiritual advancement of the people of Laos. The NLP Handout (Eng/Lao) gives an easy-to-approach summary of our Key Recommendations.

Our main recommendation is:

Vacancy announcement at LIWG: National Coordinator

LIWG is looking for a dynamic and motivated candidate, with an interest in Land Issues!

Location: Based in Vientiane with occasional travel to the provinces.

Contract: 12 months, starting in the beginning of July 2014 (negotiable).

Xayaboury executes mass timber factory closure to save forests

Vientiane Times, 22 May 2014

Xayaboury provincial authorities have ordered many wood factories to stop their businesses for operating illegally, amidst a shortage of young trees and saplings. The Director of Xayaboury State inspection organisation Department, Mr Bounta Inthavong spoke to Vientiane Times yesterday on the situation with the timber trade in the province and how authorities planned to address it.

Experts formulate plans for natural resources and environment sector

Vientiane Times, 17 May 2014

Lao and international experts have vowed to consolidate partnerships and policies to address the challenges encountered by the country’s natural resources and environment sector. The experts made the decision last week when reviewing their cooperation in the sector over the past six months and discussing the implementation of directives reached at last year’s round table meeting.

Reaching forest cover target ‘a challenging task’: minister says

Vientiane Times, 14 May 2014

Increasing forest cover to 65 percent of the country’s entire area by 2015 and further to 70 percent by 2020 will prove challenging even though Laos plants 30,000 hectares of trees each year. Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Vilayvanh Phomkhe, made the observation recently, noting that satellite data puts current forest cover at just over 50 percent of Laos’s total area, which the minister said was still low.

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