Wednesday, February 6, 2013

New Inle Lake hotel zone unveiled

Wednesday, 06 February 2013 17:21 | Khin Myo Thwe

A new hotel zone for Inle Lake is to be built on a 600-acre plot centered at Ingyingone village, some 15 miles from the picturesque lake.

The serenity and culture at Inle lake is fast making the area a popular destination for foreign visitors. But is tourism growth at the lake sustainable? (PHOTO: Xiao Ting Shirley/ Mizzima)

At a press briefing in Shan State’s Nyaungshwe Township on February 5, committee secretary for the project, Soe Win Naing, said that the new hotel zone will be built on land from six villages: Kanbe, Chaungpa, Ingyingone, Magyigone, Wethtatkin and Thaleoo.

“The only outstanding issue is to pay ‘crop compensation’ to 18 local farmers,” he said.

Soe Win Naing said that 113.9 million kyat (US $134,000) had been earmarked for the 18 farmers affected by the construction. He said that the local government committee had already paid over 400 million kyat ($470,000) in land/crop compensation to 53 other farmers.

The hotel zones secretary of Myanmar Hoteliers Association for Taunggyi, Aung Kyaw Moe, said that after deducting the land needed for roads and ravines in this designated zone, there would be over 300 acres of land on which hotels could be built.

“We have been told that 150 acres have been earmarked for foreign investments, 100 acres for national hoteliers, and over 50 acres are for local hoteliers,” Aung Kyaw Moe said.

This new hotel zone will be situated alongside the Nyaungshwe-Nampan-Pinlaung highway, some 15 miles from Nyaungshwe, also known as Yawnghwe, which is a couple of miles north of Inle Lake, one of Myanmar’s most famous natural tourist attractions.

Local resident Mya Aung told Mizzima that this new hotel zone would provide job opportunities for the local community.

However, the news is sure to met with dismay by environmentalists who say that overdevelopment of the area around Inle Lake is causing irreversible damage to the local forests and the lake itself.
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