Vietnam orders compensation for Formosa toxic spill to be paid by June

By VnExpress   March 16, 2017 | 08:40 pm GMT+7
Vietnam orders compensation for Formosa toxic spill to be paid by June
A villager shows dead sea fish he collected on a beach in Phu Loc district, in the central province of Thua Thien Hue on April 21, 2016. Photo by AFP

The country is still recovering from what is considered one of the worst environmental disasters in its history.

The Vietnamese government has called on authorities to complete compensation payments for all fish farmers in the country's central provinces affected by the toxic disaster caused by Taiwanese steel firm Formosa last year.

The executive order, issued at a recent meeting chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Truong Hoa Binh, stated that the provinces of Ha Tinh, Quang Binh, Quang Tri and Thua Thien-Hue should complete payments in the next three months.

Various ministries and the government office have also been urged to send inspection teams to check and assist the compensation process.

Vietnam is still tying up the loose ends of what was considered one of the worst environmental disasters in the country's history, almost a year after the event.

Last month, Vietnam publicly named 11 government, provincial and industry officials responsible for the incident.

It named ex-environment minister Nguyen Minh Quang, former vice minister Bui Cach Tuyen and former chief of Ha Tinh's provincial Communist Party unit Vo Kim Cu, along with eight other officials, saying they should be disciplined or face review.

Formosa Ha Tinh Steel, which runs an $11 billion steel plant, polluted more than 200km (125 miles) of coastline in April 2016, killing more than 100 tons of fish and devastating the environment, jobs and economies in four provinces. The Taiwanese company admitted to having discharged untreated waste into the sea, and agreed last June to pay $500 million in compensation.

The environment ministry said that the affected region is expected to take a decade to completely recover from the incident, while experts predict that the disaster may set Vietnam’s economy back for years to come.

Related news:

> Vietnamese fish farmers win $570,000 compensation for mass fish deaths

> Man hospitalized by guard at Formosa compensation meeting in central Vietnam

> Compensation starts to reach fishermen after Formosa's toxic spill