The Ministry of Tourism has formed a special committee to investigate a private company’s involvement in a condominium construction on coastal land at Prek Treng beach in Preah Sihanouk province.
This follows a strong backlash from the public against land reclamation involving the project.
Minister of Tourism Thong Khon instructed the committee to take action against the property developer, noting that the company might be violating the coastal area management law for polluting the beach and sea.
Under the purview of the National Committee for the Management and Development of the Coastal Zone (NCMD), the law requires construction to take place at least 100 metres or more from the coast.
Khon added that the NCMD is examining the legal aspects of the case. The culprit might be requested to dig out the land that has already been filled.
He called on Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities to protect their coast and to not allow any construction that could destroy beautiful beaches.
However, Preah Sihanouk Governor Yun Min denied the company had done any wrongdoing. He said the developer is a Cambodian company which has been given permission from the authorities.
Without revealing the company’s name, Min said: “It has already obtained the permit. It did not commit a serious crime – just minor technical issues.
“Following the proper technical procedures, it should have placed the stones before backfilling the foundation with soil. But what they did was dumping the two altogether while it was raining, hence the change in the colour of sea water,” he said.