Prime Minister Hun Sen said he was considering a businessman’s request to swap four land plots on the outskirts for the current dumpsite in Phnom Penh.
Addressing students during a graduation ceremony in Phnom Penh on Wednesday, Hun Sen said he had tasked the Ministry of Economy and Finance to coordinate the process as the capital copes with mounting waste.
Rubbish disposal in Phnom Penh is currently increasing to more than 3,000 tonnes a day.
“That businessman has guaranteed that he has four plots outside [Phnom Penh] ready to be turned into dumpsites as long as there is an exchange with the current one.
“I think it’s possible because we want to have four separate dumpsites. Don’t just take rubbish to the Stung Meanchey dump,” he said.
“So just ask him to find four plots of land outside [Phnom Penh], then we can dispose of rubbish there and give the current one to him. The [new] dumpsites may be more than 100ha, so we can consider it,” he said.
Hun Sen said he had assigned Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth to work on it. “I’ve instructed him to submit the request to me and to coordinate the process,” he said.
Hun Sen also appealed to Phnom Penh residents to dispose of rubbish properly as the government is set to revoke its contract with Centri, the capital’s only waste collection company.
Keo Channarith, the head of the Dangkor district dumpsite administration, told The Post on Wednesday that Phnom Penh collected more than 3,000 tonnes of rubbish each day, with the amount increasing every year by 12 to 16 per cent.
“This is not the total amount. If we fully collect rubbish from all 105 communes in Phnom Penh, it would rise to 4,000 tonnes.”
He said that Phnom Penh currently has only one dumpsite, measuring around 30ha, in the Boeung Choeung Ek area in Dangkor district.
“Collecting rubbish in Phnom Penh is difficult because of traffic [congestion]. We have only one dumpsite, so all the rubbish trucks must go to the same dumpsite.
“If we had dumpsites in four areas in Phnom Penh, that would be very convenient and we can manage it easily,” he said.
Ministry of Environment secretary of state and spokesman Neth Pheaktra told The Post on Wednesday that the amount of rubbish in Cambodia’s urban areas is more than 10,000 tonnes a day, or nearly four million tonnes a year.
Of the total, 65 per cent is wet rubbish, 20 per cent is plastic and more than 10 per cent is solid waste, while rubbish that can be recycled only amounts to more than 10 per cent.