Xayaburi dam project commits 100 million dollars to redesign

The Nation 19 July 2012

Vientiane - The Xayaburi dam will spend 100 million dollars to revamp its much-criticised project to mitigate its possible impact on the Mekong River, a media report said Thursday.

But a green group specializing in river ecology disputes claims that the redesign can achieve its intended environmental benefits.

"We have redesigned the dam and we expect an increase to the investment cost," Xayaburi Power Company Limited deputy managing director Rewat Suwanakiti told the Vientiane Times.

The 3.5-billion-dollar project is expected to spend the extra funds on a revamp to aid fish migration and sediment flows in the Mekong in line with recommendations from consultancies Poyry of Finland and the French Compagnie Nationale du Rhone, the state-run daily said, citing unnamed sources.

The project’s investors Tuesday for the first time invited technicians from the Mekong River Commission, donors including the Asian Development Bank and World Bank, and staff from the embassies of Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam to visit the proposed dam site in Xayaburi, northern Laos.//DPA

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