Last November 8th was an historical landmark for Myanmar with the first real free election since 1991. It was an unprecedented victory for NLD (Aung San Su Kiy’s party). The new government took charge on April 1st 2016 and already a lot of changes are carried out.
As a major promoter of green economy and green policies, Green Lotus Foundation has met some of the new political representatives of the country in NaypPyiTaw (the capital city) and in some regions in order to talk about a sustainable development for Myanmar and how to foster economical growth with environmentally and socially adapted solutions.
- Meeting with Union Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation (MALI) : U Aung Thu
H.E UM U Aung Thu welcomed Green Lotus team and expresses his satisfaction about our work for Myanmar. Many representatives of his office attended the meeting, including the Permanent Secretary, U Tin Htut.
Green Lotus chairman, Mr Jean-Marc Brûlé gave a presentation about environmental stakes in Myanmar and the potential of sustainable and organic agriculture, and renewable energies in rural areas. This presentation came along with an introduction on Green Lotus activities and achievements over its last 4 years of work in Myanmar.
The second part of the meeting dealt with the many environmental issues in Myanmar, particularly as regards the development of agriculture with potentialities of agro-ecology and organic production.
U Aung Thu favours agriculture capable of feeding Myanmar people on the one hand, and taking care of the environment and of the farmers on the other hand. He wished to avoid the pitfalls of intensive agriculture. The minister was also very interested in the presentation of solutions adapted to the Myanmar background in the field of renewable energies.
- Meeting with the Union Minister of Ministry of Natural resources and Environmental Conservation (MONREC) H.E U Ohn Winn
His Excellency U Ohn Winn was accompanied by U Nyi Nyi Kyaw, U Hla Maung Thein and U Than Hlaing, DGs & DGAs in charge of the different departments of the Ministry.
After presenting the activities of Green Lotus in Myanmar, Mr Brûlé put the emphasis on climate change, a major threat for the country, and on the outputs of the Myanmar delegation who went to Paris last December to attend COP 21. With the help of Green Lotus, civil society representatives have been enabled to take a wider part in the talks about climate change.
The Minister has welcomed warmly the activities and the work of Green Lotus whose expertise is recognized in the Ministry, particularly in the Department of the conservation of the environment (ECD). The Environment has become one of the priorities for the new government, thus strengthening the part played by MONREC. He has invited Green Lotus to take part in the activities of the Ministry and also to deliver lectures in the agricultural university (Yezin University), which is launching a training course in environmental sciences.
- Meeting with the Minister of Construction: U Win Khaing
Green Lotus said how it viewed the potentialities of eco-building in Myanmar and how town and country planning was an important tool for development.
The Minister presented the new objectives and missions of the Ministry of Construction as well as the directives given by the government. Priority is given to public housing for the poorest. He pointed out that some projects of the past in this field failed. The Ministry wishes to appeal to Green Lotus’s expertise in low cost public housing but whose conception, building and use would meet the international social and environmental standards.
Green Lotus presented the innovative pilot project that be financed mostly by the French Agency for Development (AFD) in a shanty district of Yangon (Dagon Seikkan). The team in charge of public housing and poor districts is very interested by this project of urban renovation and participative innovation, which is part of it, as a new method for a new democracy.
Green Lotus wishes to develop a partnership with MOC and set up a study trip to a famous eco-district in Europe to develop an innovative and good quality urban model for sustainable Myanmar towns.
- Meeting with the Parliamentary Committee in charge of International Relations.
The Chairman and several members of the Parliamentary Committee of International Relations have met the Green Lotus team to talk about the work done by the organization on environmental issues but also to expound views on the future of Myanmar and the best solutions the country could choose to develop. The number of international partnerships has increased during the last five years but Myanmar intends to protect its resources and heritage.
- Meeting with the Parliamentary Committee in charge of Natural Resources and of Environment.
The Head and many members of the Parliamentary Committee in charge of Natural Resources and the Environment have met Green Lotus inside the Parliament compound. It has been an opportunity to meet Green Lotus’s long time friends who have recently been elected Members of Parliament.
The Committee wishes that Green Lotus organized regularly training workshops about the stakes of climate change, environmental policies, the green economy and other themes for the Members of Parliament from the higher and lower assemblies.
Green Lotus has been warmly invited to visit the constituencies of Members of Parliament from the committee and organize trainings and awareness workshops about green issues and sustainable development.
- Meeting with the Governor of the Yangon Region: U Pyo Min Thein
The area of Yangon has the largest urban population of Myanmar; and environmental, social and economic stakes are very dramatic. The local authorities have to manage a large influx of migrants that increases the population of the poor districts. And at the same time the industrial growth of outward areas runs errantly without long-term planning.
Green Lotus presented its awareness and training activities on urban issues such as public transport, housing, energy efficiency, renewable energies, as well as its expertise in the fields of urban planning.
U Pyo Min Thein underlined the importance of common work, and of participation of citizens and of the youth.
Green Lotus has been invited to take part in the study about precarious districts, which has been launched this month by the regional government. Finding sustainable solutions for the inhabitants of those districts is one of the priorities of the new local government in line with the Green Lotus project financed by AFD.
- Meeting with the Governor of the Magwe Region: U Aung Moe Nyo
The Chief Minister of the Magwe Region is a long-standing friend of Green Lotus since he took part in training sessions for representatives organized by Green Lotus since February 2014 in Nay Pyi Taw.U Aung Moe Nyo has been interested in and aware of environmental issues in his country for a long time.
U Aung Moe Nyo has met the Green Lotus team with his nearest advisers and cabinet colleagues to talk about the issues the Magwe region will have to face in the years to come and now as regards climate change. Indeed, the Magwe area has been severely hit by the 2015 flooding and underwent draught during the dry season. In this agricultural region it is important to prepare the population for the natural risks they incur and to provide farmers with regular and sufficient income.