Maw Taung coal mine

From Global Energy Monitor

The Maw Taung coal mine near Taninthayi in Taninthayi state is based on a 3.6 million deposit of sub-bituminous coal. The mine is operated by Saraburi Coal Company and Myanmar Economic Corporation.[1]

Local opposition

Saraburi Coal Mining is a subsidiary of Italian-Thai Development that received a 30 year concession by Burmese authorities to export coal from the Shan State East’s Mongkok subtownship - Monghsat township - 70km north of Thailand’s Chiangrai border. Saraburi's work on the construction of the project is reportedly destroying paddy fields, farms and lands of local villagers, including areas that were not designated, according to local reports in 2011. Farmers say the coal company paid them Baht 20,000 ($ 666.6) per acre rate for compensation, a sum some said was too low to relocate their lives.[2]

The coal mining project has also been protested by people in Shan State and Thailand since 2009, who are concerned that the coal shipments could destroy and affect local village life along the proposed route, endangering the environment and their security. The plan would ship coal from the mine through conflict zones inside Shan State, then through northern Thailand, to the city of Saraburi in central Thailand, where it will be used as fuel in cement factories. Saraburi was asked by the Burma Army to construct a new route across the border in exchange for the coal concession, despite the existence of a shorter 100 km route inside Burma’s Tachilek to Thailand’s Maesai. The road is proposed to be built across Maejok on the Burmese side of the border to Thailand’s Hmong Kaolang village, and will be around 60 km inside Burma and at least 90 km inside Thailand, until it connects with the national highway at Pasang, between Maesai and Chiangrai.[2]

Articles and resources


  1. Pa’O Youth Organisation, Poison Clouds: Lessons from Burma’s largest coal project at Tigyit, Pa’O Youth Organisation, January 2011. (Pdf)
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hseng Khio Fah, "Thai coal mining in Burma begins despite of local concerns" Shan Herald, May 4, 2011.

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