EARTH Thailand

Court suspends 76 projects in Map Ta Phut Industrial Estate

Thai News Agency 29 September 2009

BANGKOK (TNA) – Thailand’s Central Administrative Court on Tuesday ordered 76 industrial projects in Map Ta Phut industrial estate in the eastern province of Rayong to temporarily halt operating amid continual concern about critical environmental and health impacts.

The Administrative Court’s decision on Tuesday came after the Stop Global Warming Association and 43 local residents living near this industrial estate had filed a complaint with the court in August to seek an emergency hearing and an injunction to put on hold all projects at the industrial zone.

The complaint of locals and the environment agency was directed against eight members of the National Environment Board, Industrial Estate Authority of Thailand and several ministers, claiming that the agency and minister concerned failed properly to issue operating license at Map Ta Phut industrial Estate.

The local residents claimed that the approval was not in accord with Article 67 of Thailand’s Constitution and that it will benefit investors doing business in the pollution control zone, 250km southeast of Bangkok.

The law requires an assessment of the health impact and hearing the opinions of Rayong stakeholders and an independent environmental body before the Cabinet licenses investment projects.