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Borikhamxay irrigation project feasibility study approved

A feasibility study for development of the Koutfamab irrigation project in Thapabath district, Borikhamxay province will proceed after the signing of an agreement in the nation's capital.

A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed in Vientiane on Friday by the Director General of the Irrigation Department, Mr Maykong Phonephommavong and China's Hainan Construction Engineering Co., Ltd Deputy General Manager, Mr Jiwei.

The ceremony was attended by Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr Thongphath Vongmany, Borikhamxay provincial deputy governor, Mr Bounseng Thammavong, along with relevant officials, local authorities and company representatives.

The project is a priority of the government and for the province utilising water from the Nam Mang I hydropower plant's downstream, Mr Maykong said.

The project will supply water to farmers' rice paddies in the project area to enable planting in both wet and dry seasons along with cultivation of cash crops, ensuring stable supply of the nation's staple along with increased commercial opportunity, he said.

To reach the goal, he said it was necessary to understand potential of water resources and feasibility of the project.

The project is expected to see water supplied to around 6,000 hectares of agricultural land in the district, said Mr Maykong.

The MoU is a necessary step prior to project development and to outline the techniques and standards applicable to the proposed irrigation system.

He said technology and experience of the company would help the project progress well and with greatest benefits to all participants.

Currently, many irrigation projects are under feasibility studies in the provinces to secure domestic food supplies and take advantage of opportunities in regional markets.

Irrigation systems are needed to ensure water supply for dry season rice production.

During the fiscal year 2015-2016, the country's rice production reached 4.12 million tonnes; a figure predicted to increase to 4.35 million in 2017.

The nation is expected to produce about 5 million tonnes of rice by 2020.

By Times Reporters
(Latest Update July 17, 2017)

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