The Standing Committee of the National Assembly has asked the government to examine the processes used by relevant authorities to approve the import of chemicals by domestic and foreign companies.
Addressing the ongoing 2nd Ordinary Session of the National Assembly, the President of the Economics, Technology and Environment Committee of the National Assembly Mr Bounpone Sisoulath urged the government to focus their inspections on the list of harmful chemicals, factories, agro-businesses, and the importers and exporters of consumer goods that have failed to comply with established rules as well as project contracts.
The inspection by the Standing Committee of the National Assembly has revealed that the unregulated use and overuse of harmful chemicals have posed negative impacts on the environment, communities and nature in several provinces including Oudomxay, Vientiane, Vientiane Capital, Khammuan, Savannakhet and Champassak.
“Recent years have witnessed many projects and factories failing to comply with approval procedures as they have released wastewater, overused and used chemicals in an unregulated manner, and imported and distributed fake and expired consumer goods thus posing health threats to consumers,” said Mr Bounpone.
Following an inspection that has been carried out by relevant authorities over recent years, a large amount of harmful chemical have been destroyed in Savannakhet, Vientiane (Province), Champassak, and Vientiane Capital.
According to the Ministry of Science and Technology and the Ministry of Health, herbicidal and insecticidal chemicals have been illegally used among some farmers of fish, pigs, poultry, and bananas, in Vientiane Capital, Champassak, Vientiane (Province), Oudomxay, and Bokeo.
The use of harmful chemicals by producers in the country not only imposes negative impacts on the environment and local communities, but also hampers the export of Lao products to regional and international markets.
Mr Bounpone attributed the prevalent use of harmful chemicals among some producers to the failure of relevant government authorities to implement in a strict and effective manner, laws and sub-law instruments. There have also been limited provisions of information on the use of chemicals and consumption of consumer goods contaminated with chemicals, as well as an incompetence of chemical analytic officials in relevant authorities and a limited government budget allocated for inspections and laboratory affairs.
Source: Lao News Agency