Singapore-Beijing link raises environmental issues

The newly opened Singapore-Beijing highway has prompted concerns about the spread of disease and potential environmental damage in the region, reports said on Tuesday.

As leaders from six nations opened the last section of the highway link through the Mekong region, critics warned against the pace of
development. Raekwon Chung of the UN told Radio Australia’s Connect Asia programme that there needs to be an environmental balance to the region’s growth: "…the current development pattern is grow first, clean up later," he said. "Everybody is obsessed about how much production you increase every year."

But John Cooney from the Asian Development Bank defended the project, saying the six national leaders have agreed to jointly tackle health risks and growing environmental threats in the region.

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