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Malaysian Ambassador visits Don Sahong Hydropower Project

Malaysian Ambassador to the Lao PDR Mohd Aini Atan undertook a site visit to the Don Sahong Hydropower Project (DSHP) in Champasak Province on July 5 2017 at the invitation of the Don Sahong Hydropower Company to witness the progress of the construction work at the site.

He was accompanied by Johan Arief Jaafar, Second Secretary, Embassy of Malaysia to the Lao PDR.

Ambassador Mohd Aini Atan noted that the construction of the DSHP is progressing well and currently at 31 percent completion and should be completed by December 2019. Located near the Lao PDR and Cambodia border, the DSHP is expected to generate 260MW of electricity upon completion.

Sim See Sheng, Chief Resident Engineer (CRE), Mohandass Sanku Pillai, Senior Project Executive and Kongher Herja learn, Environmental and Social Program Manager conducted a briefing at the site office in Champasak province to show the layout and features of the DSHP.

As the first Malaysian Official to visit the site, Ambassador Mohd Aini Atan was very pleased with the progress of work performed by the Malaysian company that will certainly contribute positively to the economic growth of the Lao PDR, especially in the field of energy. To some extent, it will contribute towards elevating the Lao PDR from the Least Developed Country status by the year 2020.

Contrary to the worry of environmentalists that the construction of the DSHP may adversely affect the presence of fish in the surrounding Mekong River, Kongher Herja learn, Environmental and Social Program Manager of the Company shared with Ambassador Mohd Aini that, in fact, the volume of fish catch by local fishermen surprisingly exceeded the volume before the construction of the DSHP mainly due to several measures undertaken to improve fish passages in selected channels along the river.

All other concerns related to nature and environment have also been addressed and continually monitored by the Company.

In addition, Ambassador Mohd Aini also visited the relocation site for 14 local families affected by the construction of the hydropower project. He was pleased that Don Sahong Hydropower Company had taken great care to ensure that the needs of the 14 affected families were taken care of by providing comfortable and quality houses and facilities to the affected families. These include the construction of a new Secondary School near to the new housing area that has benefited not only children from the 14 affected families, but also students from the surrounding area. At present, a total of 114 students are attending the school there.

Source: Lao News Agency