Myanmar Environmental Safeguards Knowledge Sharing Workshop

Nay Pyi Taw, Myanmar 29 to 30 November 2012

Background

If current reforms in Myanmar continue, ADB estimates the country’s economy could expand by 7-8% per year. While this will greatly assist poverty reduction efforts, a major challenge for the country will be balancing economic growth with environmental sustainability – particularly as growth will be largely supported by the country’s rich endowment of natural resources.

Strengthened environmental management and protection will be essential to achieve this balance. Towards this, Myanmar recently formed the Ministry of Environmental Conservation and Forestry (MOECAF),  created a new Environmental Conservation Law and begun work to finalize rules and regulations for environmental impact assessment. 

To support these efforts, ADB and other development agencies are supporting Myanmar to develop an effective safeguards system to prevent and mitigate the social and environmental impacts associated with rapid economic growth. 

For CEP, environmental and social safeguards are an important focus of the program’s environmental planning work and are an entry point for increased engagement in Myanmar during 2012-2016. 

The Workshop

The workshop brought together civil society representatives and Myanmar government officials to identify the support needed for the country to develop a safeguards system.

The event was an important first step towards developing a roadmap for development agencies to work together to improve the legal and regulatory framework for safeguards and strengthen institutions for their implementation and enforcement.

The workshop was structured around these four themes:

  1. State of the environment and future trends
  2. Legislative, regulatory and institutional framework for environmental protection
  3. International and regional best practice in environmental protection
  4. A roadmap for development partners support to safeguards strengthening

Around 70 Myanmar officials attended from 16 ministries as well as 25 representatives from development agencies including ADB, JICA, and UNEP. During the event, participants provided feedback on Myanmar's draft Environmental Impact Assessment Rules, which are expected to be finalized in the coming months.

All documentation from the event, including the meeting minutes, presentations and speeches can be accessed below. 


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