Radio Free Asia

Chinese Sugar Company Leases Parts of Cambodian Land Concession to Farmers

A Chinese sugar company with a large long-term land concession in Cambodia came under fire from NGOs Tuesday for leasing parts of the concession to local villagers, collecting rent instead of engaging in the activities stipulated in its contract with the Cambodian government. The Hengfu Group ...

RFA’s Khmer Service. Translated by Samean Yun. Written in English by Eugene Whong

Journalists Fear Tougher Restrictions as Cambodia Enacts New Law on State of Emergency

On the eve of World Press Freedom Day, journalists in Cambodia expressed concern that a new law authorizing a state of emergency to contain the spread of the coronavirus will be used by the government to restrict their ability to work. The “Law on Governing the ...

Laos Remains Vulnerable Despite Mostly Avoiding COVID-19 Carnage, Officials Say

Health officials in Laos say the government has implemented effective measures to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus, but that authorities must ensure they continue to be upheld because the impoverished nation with limited medical resources remains at risk. The small landlocked country of 7 ...

Local Workers on Lao-China Railway Say They Have Gone Without Pay For Months

Up to 30 Lao workers building a nearly completed railway project that will connect landlocked Laos with China say that they have not been paid in three to four months, because their Chinese employers left the area and went home early this year amid the ...

Reported by RFA’s Lao Service, Translated by Sidney Khotpanya. Written in English by Roseanne Gerin

Three Arrested in Laos for Illegally Mining Gold on Land Leased by Chinese Company

Authorities in Laos’ Luang Prabang province arrested three rural villagers for trespassing after they tried to mine gold on land granted in a concession to a Chinese company, RFA has learned. The villagers, from Phapon village in Luang Prabang’s Pak Ou district, were initially detained by ...

RFA’s Lao Service

Cambodia’s Senate Approves State of Emergency Law as UN Expert Warns of its Risks to Rights

Legislation authorizing a state of emergency to contain the spread of the coronavirus in Cambodia risks violating the right to privacy, free speech, and peaceful assembly, a United Nations expert said Friday, as lawmakers gave their final approval of the bill. “Emergency measures must be necessary ...

Lao Villagers Lose Farmland to Chinese Banana Grower

Villagers in Laos say a Chinese-owned banana plantation in has unfairly acquired the land of 46 families in the northern part of the country, many of whom were coerced by authorities into selling for a miniscule compensation package The 46 families sold 60 hectares (148 acres) ...

RFA’s Lao Service. Translated by Max Avary. Written in English by Eugene Whong.

New Dam Planned in Same District as Xe Pian Xe Namnoi Collapse in Southern Laos

A new dam is set to go up in southern Laos, in the district where two years ago a major dam collapse caused a flood that was described as the country’s worst in decades. On July 23, 2018, water poured over a saddle dam in Attapeu ...

Idle Factories, Empty Trade Zone Highlight Coronavirus Impact on Southeast Asia

A Chinese special economic zone in Laos has fallen silent, workers in Cambodia staged a strike after their factory closed for lack of inputs from China, and Myanmar grappled with plant closures and layoffs, as the economic fallout from the coronavirus cascaded across the region. In ...

Laos Plans to Build Sixth Large-Scale Mekong River Mainstream Dam

A Thai hydropower company has plans to build what would be Laos’ sixth large-scale Mekong river dam, the latest cog in Laos’ ambitious plan to become the “battery of Southeast Asia.” The Thailand-based Charoen Energy and Water Asia Co. Ltd. (CEWA) presented to Lao authorities the ...

RFA’s Lao Service. Translated by Max Avary. Written in English by Eugene Whong

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