China has signed a deal to help military ruled Burma construct a hydropower plant on the Salween river in the northeastern part of the country.

The official New Light of Myanmar newspaper says Burma signed an agreement Thursday with two Chinese firms, Farsighted Investment Group and Gold Water Resources, to build the 2,400-megawatt plant. It did not say when the project would be finished or how much it would cost.

This deal is one of several hydropower contracts that Burma has signed with neighbors Thailand and China.

Environmentalists warn that the projects threaten the Salween's ecosystem and endanger wildlife. Activists say the projects could displace tens of thousands in Burma and in Thailand.

The Salween River is 2,800 kilometers long and stretches from Tibet in the north, through Burma and along the Thai-Burmese border to spill into the Andaman Sea.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP and AP.