Cambodia's water resources and meteorology minister has ordered authorities to seize unlicensed sand-dredging boats.
Minister Lim Kean Hor, who is also the chairman of the sand resources committee, said the boats would be taken and kept as public property as, to date, none had obtained a license under a recently established scheme.
“I would call on the sand vendors to register for a license,” he said, adding 30 to 40 had already applied.
Keanhor, speaking at a press conference after addressing the third committee of the National Assembly, said the government would continue to crack-down on illegal dredging.
Chairman of the Planning and Investment parliamentary commission Pol Ham welcomed the move, but urged the government to also address problems with water sanitation and bank erosion.
Phnom Penh’s municipal government ordered a moratorium on sand dredging in the city last year except in specific areas. That followed a 2009 ban imposed by Prime Minister Hun Sen on exporting dredged sand.