The Ministry of Defence returned more than 1,080 acres of confiscated farmland to farmers and the Shan State Government yesterday in the presence of Vice President U Henry Van Thio.
Speaking on the occasion in his capacity as the Chairman of the Central Committee for Scrutinizing Confiscated Farmlands and Other Land, Vice President U Henry Van Thio pledged that the Union Government would work to uplift the living standards of farmers and to find markets for agricultural products.
Out of the 1,081 acres of farmland abandoned by the Ministry of Defence in Tachilek District, more than 385 acres were returned to 82 farmers. The remaining 696 acres were given to the Shan State Government.
“Believing that returning confiscated farmlands to farmers who make up 70 per cent of the country’s rural population would develop the agricultural sector and promote their living standard, organizations concerned are urged to continue to work for abandoning the remaining confiscated farmland,” said U Henry Van Thio.
He reiterated that the Union Government has encouraged the post-harvest sector so that the farmers can earn more income and can find markets for their products.
The government is making efforts for development of wholesale markets and contract farming in regions and states in attempts to prevent exploitation of the farmers.
Myanmar saw a record export of rice in the 2017-2018 year, with 3.2 million tons of rice, the most in 73 years.
At the ceremony, a representative of the Ministry of Defence handed over the land use permits to the farmers.
Before attending the ceremony in Tachilek, Vice President U Henry Van Thio visited a home for the disabled and developmentally challenged children in Taunggyi and donated cash to the home.
U Henry Van Thio also went to Inle Hotel Zone and assisted the officials concerned in promoting the hotel and tourism service in Shan State.
At the meeting with hoteliers there, the Vice President has called for cooperation between Shan State Government, hoteliers and local people in providing services to travellers as more travellers are expected to visit the state when the Heho Airport, which is being upgraded, will be able to receive international charter flights.
Vice President U Henry Van Thio also visited a water supply facility in Tachilek and a local vineyard and winery in Taunggyi.