Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tough talk on ELCs

Tough talk on ELCs

Tough talk on ELCs

Economic land concessionaires not abiding by their contracts could have their licences revoked if they have seriously breached the terms, Prime Minister Hun Sen has said.

Illegally seizing forest land would be punished under the Law on Forestry, he said on Friday, speaking at an annual general meeting of the agricultural sector in Phnom Penh.

The land would be reclaimed by the state and turned over to military veterans as social land concessions, he added.

“We must continue to promote reform of forest boundaries and permanent forest assets, enhance classification to identify areas of forest degradation and restore the forests.”

But rights groups and the opposition yesterday said Hun Sen’s comments “didn’t make any difference”.

“The appeal . . . is too late, because concessions have seriously affected natural resources and people’s livelihoods since 2008,” Chan Soveth, senior monitor at rights group Adhoc, said. “If [he] wants to have some natural resources left, he should take huge measures against any company that has senior government officials behind it.”

Cambodia National Rescue Party whip Son Chhay agreed.

“It is not the first time the prime minister has said that. But it doesn’t make any difference. If they [companies] violate the contract, then take the land away. It’s that simple.

“The real soldiers who need land, there’s not a lot of them. This land will go into the hands of corrupt generals.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Ministers to tackle sea pollutants

    Preah Sihanouk provincial authorities and members of local communities have collected 77 tonnes of water hyacinth at a Sihanoukville beach, Preah Sihanouk Provincial Hall spokesperson Or Saroeun said. He told The Post yesterday that the aquatic weeds had been floating along some of the province’s

  • EU timber deal in firing line

    A committee of more than 20 national and international organisations filed a petition to the EU on October 10 to prevent it from signing a timber trade agreement with Vietnam, noting that the deal would be disastrous to the Kingdom’s forests. The petition claims Vietnamese timber

  • Kim Sok to keep up fight ‘for change’ from Finland

    Kim Sok, wanted by the Kingdom’s authorities for defaming the government, reiterated on Sunday his determination to continue helping to make “a real change” to Cambodian politics after receiving asylum in Finland, even as a government spokesman mocked the political analyst over the development.

  • PM: Programme to recover Vietnam War missing back on

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced the resumption of the MIA programme to recover the remains of American service personnel missing after action on Cambodian soil during the Vietnam War. The programme was suspended for more than a year after the US government imposed visa