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PM denies development plans for lake in Ratanakkiri

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An aerial view shows Boeung Yeak Laom lake in Ratanakkiri province. wiki commons

PM denies development plans for lake in Ratanakkiri

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday denied that the government intends to allow private development around a lake in Ratanakkiri province, which is important to a biologically diverse ecosystem.

The denial was sparked by an article published in the Rasmei Kampuchea Daily on Monday that said: “the government will approve a 75-year lease for a Chinese company to develop Boeung Yeak Laom”.

Hun Sen wrote on his Facebook page: “This morning I read the news on Rasmei Kampuchea saying that the ‘government will approve investment on Boeung Yeak Laom’. I am asking who and why would you create this type of story?”

“On behalf of the government of Cambodia, I completely deny any [plans to allow] private investment on Boeung Yeak Laom, which is very important [to Cambodia], regardless of where the company comes from.”

Boeung Yeak Laom was recently reclassified as a “multiuse area” by the government. A sub-decree dated June 13 placed the 225-hectare crater lake – located in Yeak Laom commune in Ratanakkiri’s Banlung city – under the management of the Ministry of Environment.

It will work with relevant ministries and institutions to conserve the biodiverse ecosystem.

Teav Sarakmony, editor-in-chief of Rasmei Kampuchea told The Post on Tuesday that his newspaper made a mistake. He explained that the headline and lead contradicted the rest of the story, which was about a company’s study of the area.

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