Nam Ngiep 1 Hydropower Project welcomes local villagers to their new homes in Houay Soup
Twenty-four households from Hatsaykham Village, Bolikhan District, Bolikhamxay Province, Lao PDR have now moved into their new homes in Houay Soup, an area which has been developed specifically by Nam Ngiep 1 Hydropower Project (NNP1) for resettlement of Project Affected People.
The official ceremony to mark the occasion and the opening of a new bridge to be known as the Nam Ngiep 1 Hydropower Bridge took place on 25 November 2016 in Bolikhan District, Bolikhamxay Province and was honoured by the presence of H.E. Dr. Chaleun Yiapaoher, Minister to the Prime Minister’s Office and Government Spokesman, H.E Sinava Souphanouvong, the Vice-Minister of Energy and Mines, the Vice Governors of both Bolikhamxay and Xaysomboun Provinces, and high-ranking government officials, shareholder representatives, contractors, and local authorities and communities.
“It is my great honour to officially welcome our community members from Hatsaykham to their new homes. The one-story villas are the result of a long and thorough consultation process that involved careful consideration of customs, traditions, and beliefs of all Project Affected People,” said Mr. Yoshihiro Yamabayashi, Managing Director of Nam Ngiep 1 Power Company Limited.
“Our grandparents and great-grandparents never had such beautiful houses. We are very happy to move into the new houses and we will take very good care of them,” said Mr. Phonesy Xiong, Head of Hatsaykham Village.
The Xiongs are one of approximately 480 households who is impacted by the Project. The majority are from four villages in Hom District, Xaysomboun Province, and many are expected to resettle in Houay Soup while others will choose full compensation and voluntarily resettle in other places.
At the hand-over ceremony, those villagers from Hatsaykham who have problems with their eyesight were presented with eye-care packs and eyeglasses, as well as an oral care pack provided by the Wankaew Project, a programme that was initiated by Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn of Thailand in 2003, supported by the Eye Glasses Bank at Metta Pracharak Hospital, the Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT), and the Better Vision Group.
Located in Bolikhan District and situated immediately to the west of the NNP1 re-regulation dam, the development of Houay Soup started in the early of 2016, and work has been entirely carried out by Lao contractors. In addition to the construction of houses, the development also includes a road access bridge across the Nam Ngiep – a 3.35 km access road to the new village – a pre-school and teacher’ accommodation, paddy fields with a comprehensive irrigation system, cash crop and fruit tree plantation areas, and grazing land.
NNP1 has started to further develop areas at Houay Soup to accommodate people who are expected to resettle there from Hom District, Xaysomboun Province, with housing scheduled to be completed by May 2017.
Nam Ngiep 1 is a 290-megawatt hydropower project under construction in the Bolikhamxay and Xaysomboun Provinces. The Project consists of the construction of two dams and two powerhouses along the Ngiep River in Bolikhamxay Province.
Since the construction of the Project started in late 2014, about 55% of work by value has been completed at the end of October 2016. Other works related to the environmental and social aspects of the Project are also on track.
The Project is being built and will be operated by the Nam Ngiep 1 Power Company whose shareholders are Kansai Electric of Japan, EGAT International, and Lao Holding State Enterprise.
The Project will start to generate electricity in January 2019 and approximately 95% of this power will be sold to Thailand and the remaining will be used for domestic consumption.
The Project expects to generate more than USD 600 million in direct revenue and other indirect benefits to the Lao Government during its 27-year concession period, after which ownership will be transferred to the Lao Government.
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