Parliamentary commission advises overhaul of national land use policy

The National Land Use Policy is in line for redress, after being highlighted by a parliamentary commission charged with targeting legislation for reform. In its current form, the policy only covers farmland – something the Commission for the Assessment of Legal Affairs and Special Issues says falls short. The current document was formulated under U Thein Sein’s government. “The National Land Use Policy cannot encompass all kinds of government-owned land, natural resources use and land management,” deputy chair of the commission U Than Win told parliament on November 30. “The policy needs to [cover] land use and land management, including village land, pasture, land allotted for religious purposes, residential, economic zones, military areas, cultural heritage sites, industrial production, offices, industrial zones, and special economic zones,” he added. The commission, headed by former Speaker Thura U Shwe Mann, suggested that if the government is to have the authority to confiscate and manage land in the event it is deemed necessary for the sake of nation and its citizens, this should be stated explicitly in the policy.

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