Prime Minister Hun Sen on March 17 chaired a meeting of the Council of Ministers – or Cabinet – to review a draft law ratifying an international-boundary treaty between Cambodia and Laos.

The treaty was signed by Prime Minister Hun Sen and his Lao counterpart Sonexay Siphandone on February 13 during the former’s February 13-14 visit.

The council noted in a statement that the treaty is based on results of the joint border-demarcation process, which has mapped 86 per cent of the shared frontier – the same figure reported since at least 2019 – and serves as an “important” formal document to resolve issues surrounding the remaining 14 per cent.

A total of 188 rounds of formal negotiations “from 1995-2009” involving inspections of “about 465km of the approximately 540km shared border” led to the planting of 121 boundary posts, the statement said.

The draft law was designed in “good faith” to build a border of peace, stability, friendship, cooperation and long-term development, based on respect for independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and mutual benefits, it said.

Koy Pisey, vice-chairwoman of the National Authority in Charge of Border Affairs’ permanent secretariat, confirmed that the process to plant a boundary post takes ballpark two or three years, but can prolong to five in certain cases.

The demarcation rides on the “strong goodwill of border officials and the top leadership, especially Prime Minister Hun Sen, who pays utmost attention to border affairs”, she added.