Industry upset by 'green' city plans

The Industry Ministry is concerned that new town plans for many provinces show increases in green zones, designated for agricultural use, at the expense of industrial zoning.

Industry Minister Prasert Boonchaisuk said on Tuesday the Interior Ministry had been asked to review the new town plans for several provinces to avoid any unwanted impact on industrial development.

The Department of Public Works and Town and Country Planning departments are drafting the new city plans nationwide.

He said the Industry Ministry had noted a significant rise in green zones for agriculture, and a cut in violet zones designated for industrial use.

The new city plans were based on information gathered in 2004, which did not reflect the current situation as the industrial sector had expanded greatly, he said.

Therefore, the Interior Ministry should carefully consider revising many city plans, based on current information.

The ministry will seek the revision of town plans for provinces such as Lamphun, where the new city plan designates 92% of the total area as a green zone, and Nakhon Ratchasima where 99% was set aside as a green zone.

The industrial sector in those provinces - as well as those in Chiang Mai, Chiang Rai and Rayong - was likely to be hit by the new city plans, said Mr Prasert.

Arthit Wuthikaro, permanent secretary of Industry, said new city plans have been announced in eight provinces that impact the public and the private sector, and therefore the Interior Ministry should be careful when issuing plans for other provinces.

He said the Industry Ministry decided to send a letter to the Interior Ministry after the cabinet recently allowed the Industry Ministry to supply information relating to the new city plan in Rayong province, where the violet zone has been cut by half to 20,000 rai, causing problems for the private sector.

Ongart Kittikhunchai, chairman of Federation of Thai Industry's Chiang Mai office, said the private sector will petition the governor, objecting to the announced new city plan that reserved 92% as green areas.

The new plan would cause difficulties for industrial expansion and impact real estate development because of height restrictions on buildings. This would in turn affect the tourism industry, he claimed.  

Related search: Industry Ministry, city plans, Interior Ministry, Thailand, private sector, Federation of Thai Industry, green planning

About the author

Writer: Online Reporters