The Pursat provincial Department of Environment has announced a call for individuals occupying land within community areas of protected zones to apply for self-declaration for land ownership certification.

The deadline for applications is set for August 31.

This announcement comes in the wake of a sub-decree issued by the government, aimed at defining the community areas within these protected zones. The legislation also seeks to explore the potential for issuing ownership certificates to occupants, in line with existing law and regulations.

The department is urging all individuals currently residing on land within the community areas of the province’s protected regions to submit their applications for self-declaration by the deadline. The intent of this self-declaration is to legalise the occupation of the land.

“Please ensure those occupying land within the community areas of the protected zones in Pursat province report to the environment department, providing their ID card, family or residence book, and land ownership certificate,” it urged.

Following this announcement, department director Kong Puthyra issued a secondary notice to the governor and district board of governors, enlisting their assistance in circulating the announcement among the populace and to ensure a smooth process for the issuance of title deeds in protected areas.

“In receipt of this notice, it is incumbent upon town, district and commune administrations to inform occupants of the land in these community areas of protected zones.

“They must come forth and obtain a self-declaration on land tenure so the process of legalising their title deeds can be can prepared,” he said.

On July 3, the Ministry of Environment submitted a digital update of the protected area map data to the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction.

The update aimed to improve the efficiency of management and cooperation with relevant local administrative institutions on land registration for people in protected zones.

The environment ministry reported in 2020 that it managed and conserved 7.2 million hectares of protected areas and biodiversity corridors.

This encompassed 20 of the Kingdom’s 25 provinces, further demonstrating the country’s commitment to preserving its natural environment.