Large extension for Yangon on the table

Yangon mayor U Hla Myint said an extension to Yangon City is being planned to the west of the existing city under the auspices of the regional government, though other members of the regional parliament said they had not heard of the plan until the announcement.

Covering an estimated 30,000 acres, the expansion is required because Yangon’s population has been growing enormously with little room left to accommodate the people coming in, the mayor said at a session of the Yangon Region hluttaw on August 23.

The proposed new city is to be situated between the Pan Hlaing river and Twante canal, in the area of Twante, Kyeemyindaing and Seik Gyi Kha Naung To townships.

It will be built by Myanma Saytannar Myothit Public Company, with a budget that U Hla Myint said could reach into the billions of US dollars.

However, he did not provide further details about the project, including start dates and how they chose this project. He did say that the government and the company have agreed to complete 70 percent of the project within three years, which is to include a number of buildings, roads and bridges.

The Myanma Saytannar Myothit Public Company could not be found for comment.

However, some parliamentarians said they had not heard of the project before U Hla Myint’s comments on August 22.

Daw Nyo Nyo Thin, member of parliament in the Yangon Region hluttaw, said the project was a surprise even to hluttaw members until U Hla Myint’s speech.

“I don’t understand why he didn’t discuss the project [further],” she said. “I think the government has many secrets for the project.”

Regional hluttaw representative U Myo Min Aung said it is not clear how the budgets for the project are to be estimated.

“They need to be clear about how they handle the issues of transforming farmers’ land into housing area,” he said. “They [government officials] said it was to be done in accordance with the Land Act, but they should be transparent about it.”

U Win Myint said planners had been discreet about the project to reduce unnecessary risk, adding that displaced people will be properly consulted.


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