Hlawga National Park handed over to Htoo Company

Mizzima (Rangoon) – In its privatization spree, the Burmese military junta has now begun to lease out the country’s natural resources. The Hlawga National Park, in Mingaladon Township, is being handed over to Htoo Trading Company to run.

The park is the property of the Ministry of Forestry but will be transferred to the private firm, which will take the responsibility of all the employees.

“If the government leases it to a private company the maintenance will be more systematic. I don’t know the number of years the lease is for. A contract will be signed in the end of April,” said a park official.

“The park generates revenue mainly from elephant rides by visitors among other entertainment facilities. Those wanting to shoot films in the park will have to pay a fee,” he added.

Hlawga National Park is in Mingaladon, Rangoon Division and came into being in 1980. The park is spread over 1500-acres and includes a wildlife park, a mini-zoo and a buffer zone. The people’s resort is owned by the Ministry of Forestry. There are around 200 species of birds in the park. However the 2008 Cyclone Nargis uprooted hundreds of trees.

Htoo Company, owned by Burmese tycoon U Te Za, has been illegally exporting teak from western Burma to Bangladesh since the company got permission to harvest teak in western Burma

Htoo Company Smuggles Teak to Bangladesh

Maungdaw : Htoo Company, owned by Burmese tycoon U Te Za, has been illegally exporting teak from western Burma to Bangladesh since the company got permission to harvest teak in western Burma, said a source close to the company.

The source said Htoo Company has, since last year, produced a huge amount of teak from the Mayu Range alongside the motor road connecting Buthidaung and Maungdaw Townships in western Burma.

The teak has been stockpiled by the company at Nwa Ron Daung Village in Maungdaw Township, which is located alongside a creek that flows into the Naff River. The Naff River forms the boundary between Burma and Bangladesh.

As the military junta has plans to cultivate rubber plants in the area, particularly in the Mayu Range, the government gave permission to the Htoo Company to clear-cut teak in the area.

A local elder said, “Most of the teak in the area was cultivated over 50 years ago, some before Burma gained independence. It was once the biggest forest in Arakan State.” Continue reading “Htoo Company, owned by Burmese tycoon U Te Za, has been illegally exporting teak from western Burma to Bangladesh since the company got permission to harvest teak in western Burma”