Workers gather pebbles at a sand excavation site along the Mekong River in Vientiane. Photo: AFP

Chinese demand for sand and cement delivers wage for Laotian workers – but is destroying the Mekong

China world’s top consumer of sand – devouring more than 60 per cent of the global output and using more in four years than the US did in the entire 20th century

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Workers gather pebbles at a sand excavation site along the Mekong River in Vientiane. Photo: AFP
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