Jade Companies Linked To Regime Causing Drought In Hpakant

Residents of several villages in Hpakant Towship are facing water insecurity after large jade
mining companies squandered it to extract the precious mineral in Kachin State.

“I’ve never experienced such a drought in the last four to five years,” a Mawsiser man told KNG,
on condition of anonymity. He said the companies, which have been operating under the military
regime since mid-2021, use large machinery and have used up most of the water around his

“A few wells still have water, but the water is undrinkable,” he said.

There are about 50 companies working near his village.

A villager from Lon Khin, who also requested anonymity, said they had no choice but to buy
water at 2,000 kyat per 10 litres. He said that those who have a regular income and a business
may be able to afford it, but others cannot and they boil their water before drinking it. With
mining companies polluting the main water sources in the area, it’s unclear whether the water is
safe to drink.

Although the residents of both villages suffered from water shortages last year, alternative
sources were properly distributed, something that’s not been happening in 2023.

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