Tackling farmland issues needs speed

With the aim of boosting economic development in the country and to create job opportunities for landless citizens by using the vacant, fallow and virgin lands for agriculture, animal husbandry, mining and other legal businesses, the region and state governments, including the Nay Pyi Taw Council have permitted use of farmlands for other purposes, in accordance with Section 30 of the Farmland Law.
When the processes for scrutinizing the applications in some regions and states were reviewed, it was found that there were delays in some processes exceeding the period allowed by the law.
Hence, to make the government objective a success, officials concerned are advised to seek ways for tackling challenges they are facing to ensure that there are no unnecessary delays in the processes and no hindrances to private businesses and investors.
Meanwhile, those who fail to follow the law which allows a six month period to start their projects on the land will face actions under the law.
Besides, we would like to add a word of caution here — carving out plots for housing on farmlands and their sale is in contravention of the Farmland Law, and the situation on the ground today demands effective action against such practices.
The rules for the Law Amending the 2012 Farmland Law are being amended, and actions would be taken against those who are using the farmlands in contravention of the Farmland Law.
As the central farmland management committee is stepping up efforts to bring about sustainable livelihoods and the development of the country through proper land management and utilization, the regional farmland management committees are urged to expose the projects which fail to start within the six-month window granted by the law and those who fail to complete by the deadline.
The law will take its course without fear or favour in this regard.
In the past, using farmland for other purposes was a common practice in Myanmar. To effectively prevent the illegal distribution of farmland, corruption must be rooted out.
As the Union Government is committed to justice and fairness, the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Irrigation; Ministry of Home Affairs; and other related municipal organizations should cooperate to ensure the regulations and procedures under the law are followed.
There is no doubt that our country is taking steps towards better land governance; therefore policies and processes to ensure that our land resources are well managed in a sustainable manner need to be fine-tuned. Furthermore, institutions in this area need to be upgraded for maximum effectiveness and efficiency.

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