According to project disclosure documents, the objective of this project is "to increase the capacity, quality, and efficiency of the North-South intercity rail connectivity and to promote low-carbon transportation system across the western Greater Bay Area in China."
The Government of China has requested sovereign-backed financing to support the construction of one section of Guangzhou-Foshan-Jiangmen-Zhuhai (GFJZ) Intercity Rail line within Jiangmen Municipality, a city in Guangdong Province on the western bank of the Pearl River Estuary. Connecting four major cities, the GFJZ Intercity Rail is an essential and currently missing link in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area (GBA) Intercity Railway Network. It has been included in the Construction Plan for Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area Intercity Railways approved by National Development and Reform Commission in 2020 and the 14th Five-Year Plan for Development of Comprehensive Transportation in Guangdong Province approved by Guangdong Provincial Government in 2021. Upon completion, the GFJZ Intercity Rail will play a significantly strategic role in achieving green and efficient interconnection within GBA and promoting balanced and inclusive regional development for cities in the western GBA.
ENVIRONMENTAL AND SOCIAL INFORMATION
The Bank's Environmental and Social Policy (ESP), including the Environment and Social Standards (ESSs) and the Environmental and Social Exclusion List will apply to this Project. ESS 1 (Environmental and Social Assessment and Management) and ESS 2 (Involuntary Resettlement) will apply to the Project. Applicability of ESS 3 (Indigenous Peoples) will be assessed and determined during subsequent stages of Project preparation.
An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and Social Impact Assessment (SIA) will be prepared due to separate consultants being hired to work on environmental and social aspects. The EIA will include an Environmental Management Plan (EMP) to address Project related environmental issues. To address issues of any physical and economic displacement, the SIA will include a Resettlement Plan (RP) to govern any physical and economic displacement of a temporary or permanent nature. Nevertheless, in accordance with AIIB's ESP and the prepared EIA/EMP and SIA/RP, an environmental and social impact assessment (ESIA) including environmental and social management plan (ESMP) will be prepared both in English and Chinese, those will be disclosed by the Client and the Bank timely in appropriate manner. In addition, an Entitlement Matrix will be prepared and an approximate budget and schedule for Resettlement and Rehabilitation will be worked out. Those potential ES risks and impacts would be avoided or mitigated through the implementation of prepared EMP and RP.
The potential environmental impacts for railway project are noise and vibration, dust and air emissions, water contamination, earthwork spoil, debris and other solid wastes, soil erosion, etc. The construction activities may also have potential impacts on community health and safety. During operation there will be noise and vibration impact, waste management of the stations and maintenance base as well as potential electromagnetic radiation caused by operation of main substation. The EIA will further assess the noise impact to the neighboring community and propose mitigation measures to address those impacts if needed.
The project is estimated to involve significant land acquisition and resettlement impacts as identified in the FSR (Jiangmen section), a total of 167 hectares (2,515 mu) of land and 36.7 hectares of demolition, accounting for more than 20% of the total investment. A RP will be developed based on the impacts survey to elaborate affected person's entitlements, income and livelihood restoration strategy, institutional arrangements, monitoring and reporting framework, budget and time-bound implementation schedule and provisions for grievance redress. In addition, the potential impact of project activities on women in the community will be assessed in the SIA and then a Gender Action Plan (GAP) will be prepared and included into the SIA.
Consultation, and Information Disclosure. Meaningful and inclusive stakeholder engagement with affected communities will be initiated during the EIA and SIA process. The Project Management Office (PMO) will follow the Bank's ESP requirements for timely public consultations and information disclosure. A Stakeholder Engagement Plan (SEP) will provide a detailed plan for this process that will also publicize the Project-Affected People's Mechanism (PPM). Environmental and social instruments, in English and Chinese languages, will be disclosed on the Client's and Bank's websites and made available in hard copies in the Project area.
The proposed ES assessment will explore existing, functional grievance redress mechanisms for Project-affected people and/or construction contracted workers to avoid duplication. The Project team will evaluate if they need to be strengthened, or if separate GRMs will be required. The information of designated project-level GRM in Chinese together with the information of PPM of AIIB will be timely disseminated to the stakeholders concerned in an appropriate manner.
Senior Investment Operations Specialist – Transport
Officer, Department of International Economic and Financial Cooperation
Deputy Director, Jiangmen Municipal Development and Reform Bureau
ACCESS TO INFORMATION
You can submit an information request for project information at: https://www.aiib.org/en/contact/information-request/index.html
ACCOUNTABILITY MECHANISM OF AIIB
The AIIB has established the Accountability Mechanism for Project-Affected People (PPM). The PPM provides Òan opportunity for an independent and impartial review of submissions from Project-affected people who believe they have been or are likely to be adversely affected by AIIBÕs failure to implement the ESP in situations when their concerns cannot be addressed satisfactorily through Project level GRMs or AIIB Management processes.Ó Two or more project-affected people can file a complaint. Under the current AIIB policy, when the bank co-finances a project with another development bank, it may apply the other bank's standards. You can refer to the Project Summary Information document to find out which standards apply. You can learn more about the PPM and how to file a complaint at: https://www.aiib.org/en/about-aiib/who-we-are/project-affected-peoples-mechanism/how-we-assist-you/index.html
The complaint submission form can be accessed in Arabic, Bahasa Indonesia, Bengali, Chinese, English, Tagalog, Hindi, Nepali, Russian, Turkish, or Urdu. The submission form can be found at: https://www.aiib.org/en/about-aiib/who-we-are/project-affected-peoples-mechanism/submission/index.html