Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed that the relevant ministries begin working on transforming the Arreng Valley into an eco-tourist attraction and has rejected the construction of a hydropower dam, according to the Minister of Information. The plans were announced Friday morning during a cabinet meeting at the Peace Palace.
Well-known political activist Thy Sovantha made a similar request during the Forum on Protection and Conservation of Natural Resources on Aug. 22, 2016. She also had suggested the construction of an 18-km road to Arreng. The project was approved by the premier.
During the forum, the premier stated that the road to Arreng would benefit tourism and the people in Arreng’s area. It was not to be used for logging so as to ensure that Arreng continues to be an attractive tourist destination.
Arreng is located in Koh Kong province, southwest of Cambodia. About 1300 indigenous people live in the Arreng Valley. Areng is home to rich biodiversity, including the world’s second-largest population of wild Siamese crocodile.