Home Insider Insider News China Attempting to Restart Stalled Myitsone Dam Project

China Attempting to Restart Stalled Myitsone Dam Project

According to a report published in Asia Times, China is seeking concessions from Myanmar to resume hydroelectric power project at Myitsone in northern Myanmar that was suspended in September 2011.

The $ 3.6 billion project was suspended by Myanmar government because of fears that it would have flooded 600 square kilometers of forest land and 90% of the electricity generated by the project would be export to China. At that time, President Thein Sein said any implementation of the project would be “against the wishes of the people”.

The dam is a large hydroelectric power development project at the confluence of the Mali and N’mai rivers, the source of the Ayeyawady River. Its long suspension will reduce the investor confidence in stability of economic policy in Myanmar. The Global Times report, “China will keep talking to Myanmar over the stalled dam and try to find a practical way to resume the project based on mutually beneficial cooperation”. China is using the proposed Myitsone hydroelectric power project to push for concessions from Myanmar for a much more important project – the deep sea port at Kyaukphyu on the Bay of Bengal. China is also aware that breaking news about resuming Myitsone project would lead to resumption of anti-Chinese protests in Myanmar.