Resettlement Program for Phase 1/ Zone A
Land inside the Thilawa SEZ Phase 1/Zone A area was acquired by the Yangon Region Department of Human Settlement and Housing Development (DHSHD) in 1997, in accordance with the Land Acquisition Act 1894. The Government of Myanmar (GoM) compensated the land users at the time.
The land was acquired for the development of the Thanlyin-Kyauktan Industrial Zone development (1,230 hectares). The Zone was to be developed and managed by the Thanlyn-Kyauktan Development Company (TKDC), a joint venture between DHSHD, under the Ministry of Construction (MoC), and SMD International Pte Ltd of Singapore. Although the Thanlyin-Kyauktan Industrial Zone development did not proceed, the land was transferred to DHSHD between 1998 and 1999 and then to the Thilawa SEZ Management Committee (TSMC) in March 2013.
During August 2012 – January 2013, the GoM issued three official notices to people residing and/or cultivating land inside the Thilawa Special Economic Zone (SEZ) area (Phase 1/Zone A and also Zone B).
In February 2013, consultation meetings were initiated with potentially affected persons. In April 2013, work commenced on a Socio-Economic Census (Census) in the SEZ area, followed by a Detailed Measurement Survey (DMS) from June 2013.
In November 2013, a Resettlement Work Plan (RWP) was completed for the Thilawa Phase 1/Zone A area by the GoM, with the technical support of a Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA)-funded Expert Team (the JICA Expert Team). The resettlement and income restoration program undertaken for Phase 1/Zone A of the Thilawa SEZ is the GoM’s first experience of managing such programs with both private and public partners and investors. The RWP was developed with the intention of meeting relevant GoM requirements as well as the JICA Guidelines for Environmental and Social Considerations and the World Bank Safeguard Policy on Involuntary Resettlement (OP4.12).
Implementation of the RWP also began in November 2013 and the activities of 81 Project Affected Households (PAH), comprising a total of 382 Project Affected Persons (PAPs), were relocated from within the 400 ha to enable the progress of the Phase 1/Zone A development. Sixty-eight PAH were physically relocated to a specially constructed Resettlement Site (RS) located near other communities that had previously been resettled. Compensation and other assistance was provided to eligible PAPs and a three-year Income Restoration Program (IRP) commenced in December 2013.
PAPs who lost their means of livelihood (both for land-based and non land-based income sources) were provided with monetary assistance.
For land-based income sources, assistance was paid for standing rice, vegetables and trees in the form of cash assistance based on the yield and the current market price. Different allowances were offered for different productive assets in recognition of their contribution to household livelihoods. For non-land-based income sources, a monetary allowance equal to the average daily wage of casual labourers was provided for the period of disruption to income generating activities due to relocation. This allowance was provided to wage workers including self-employed, contracted workers and daily workers.
A housing plot (25 x 50 feet) was provided to PAPs living in the Phase 1/Zone A area and PAPs cultivating in the Phase 1 area but living inside the SEZ Phase 2 area that wanted to move into the Relocation Site (RS). Those who lost housing were provided with a substitute house at the RS or given funds equivalent to the cost of house construction, for those who preferred to build their own house at the RS. Each household was able to use materials from their previous house in the construction of their new house. If the floor area of a substitute house provided at the RS was smaller than a PAP’s existing house, the PAP was compensated with assistance equal to the current market price of materials for the difference in floor area.
The Relocation Site (RS) is located in Myaing Tharyar Ward 3 in Nyaing Wine Village Tract, Kyauktan Township near the BantBwayKon Dam. The site is on land purchased by the DHSHD. The RS was designed to have a concrete access road, six water wells, drainage and electricity provided at each house with electricity meters also installed. Finalisation of the area for the RS and physical planning for the site took place, as planned, in the first week of October 2013, in preparation for house construction in November 2013. Construction of infrastructure at the RS took place from the third week of October 2013 through to the first week of March 2014. PAPs were given priority as labourers during the construction period. The total area for the RS is approximately three acres and a total of 68 residential plots were developed at the site.
In addition to assistance for loss of assets and income sources, monetary assistance for moving, commuting, cooperation for relocation and students was also provided to all PAPs. These allowances were aimed at facilitating the relocation process and providing support for commuting to work and school after relocation.