TAL Group’s $350-million project refused over environmental risks?

April 25, 2018 | 18:46
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Despite its eagerness to develop a $350-million textile and garment dyeing project in the northern province of Vinh Phuc, Hong Kong-backed TAL Group may fail to get the investment certificate due to the provincial authorities’ concerns about environmental pollution.
tal groups 350 million project refused over environmental risks
Environmental concerns may override Vinh Phuc province's thirst for FDI

On April 21, the Vinh Phuc People’s Committee organised a conference to collect opinions from representatives of departments, relevant authorities, and experts about the TAL Group’s textile and garment dyeing project, according to local media.

The conference was organised after the investor insisted on developing the project despite the provincial leaders’ refusal due the risk of environmental pollution.

Notably, in October 2016, after taking its second garment factory into operation, TAL expressed interest in developing a textile and garment dyeing project in Ba Thien 2 Industrial Park with the aim of creating a closed manufacturing chain.

At the time, the province estimated that if the project was approved, it would use 12,000 cubic metres of water per day, 11,840cu.m of which it would discharge in the form of wastewater. Besides, it would use 22.5 million litres and 517,000 kilogrammes of chemicals per year.

After studying the scale as well as the demand for electricity, water, and chemicals for the project, Vinh Phuc was afraid that it may discharge large volumes of wastewater that would affect highly populated areas, having potentially adverse effects on agricultural production, aquaculture, and daily life.

Thus, in December 2016 the province submitted its decision to the prime minister to refuse the project.

However, fuelled by the desire to build a closed manufacturing chain, the investor proposed the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment to approve its environmental impact assessment report.

In October 2016, TAL Group took its second, $50-million garment factory into operation in Vinh Phuc province.

The company entered Vietnam in 2004 with the $40-million Viet My Garment Textile and Garment plant in Thai Binh province’s Phuc Khanh Industrial Zone.

TAL Group manufactures products for large-scale global retailers in the US, Europe, and Asia, including famous brands like Burberry, Brooks Brothers, Banana Republic, and Tommy Hilfiger.

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