4. Government Policies

In response to the fall in aquatic resources, the Laotian government is placing increasing emphasis on aquaculture. However, a cautious approach should be taken toward the release of cultured fish in view of their potential impact on the existing ecological system. In recent years, the government initiated a land and forest allocation policy called beng din beng paa. This policy is bringing changes to the usufructuary rights to ponds and swaps, leading some villages to impose exclusionary restrictions banning outsiders from carrying out activities in their communally-owned fishery resources.


Carp chunks on sale at the Savannakhet market. As shown by the well-grown ovaries, carps released into the Mekong are naturally reproducing in the river, which was not their original habitat. The head in the lower right of the picture is not that of a carp, but a kind of Cosmochilus.


IWATA Akihisa
Changes in the Utilization of Aquatic Resources in Laos

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