New Actions on Existing Policies for Fisheries
Today I have some important issues to share with our people, some of you may have learnt about it but our foreign friends would also be interested to know. It is what I call the new actions on existing policies on fisheries and land issues.I may raise this issue to illustrate some of the actual developments relating to the Royal Government’s actions so far. Although I have denoted as “new action on existing policies” it in fact is not a new issue to be encountered and settled by the Royal Government, or to be frankly speaking, by the Cambodian People’s Party at all. Take for instance, fisheries reform is in fact a traditional issue. The way we do it is to take actions, make experiments and move slowly but surely.
As of March 8, we came to a point that all fishing lots were to be dismantled and given for people’s fishing access. We only conserve some fishery basins where fish population and species are being bred for more. In these basins no one is allowed to fish, either state or private sector or people.
We have brought this issue to a close after we have had the fishing lots for 104 years or since 1908 according to the royal regulation of Samdech Preah Sisovath in relation to the establishment of the fishing lots, the bidding of fishing lots for fishery merchants and taxing on fishing according to fishing tools. However, in our time, no tax has been imposed on fishing tackles.
What remains to be the issue in this reform effort is to continue to strengthen the management of those fishing lots that are given out for people’s fishing access. It should be noted and shared with all of you here that the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, with the guidance of HE Yim Chhay Ly, Deputy Prime Minister, has organized here, at the Council of Ministers’ building, the training for some 500 fishery communities with an aim to encourage our people’s participation in the protection of fishery resources so that they themselves would be the ones to benefit from it.
Issues of fishing restriction as imposed on the size, number and scale of various fishing tackles – traditional and modern one, have been brought for discussion and finally regulated. Lately there has been a specific request by the Muslim community for the permission to use dragging nets in their fishing activity. We have allowed such nets to be operated but only by 10 horsepower machine to the maximum.
I would urge the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to continue to work closely on this matter as sometimes some fishing tools defined in the law and regulation by the Ministry would not be sufficient for all seasons. Sometime fishing by certain tools and at certain time in a specified area would not cause impacts. We may have to update the law and regulation accordingly.
Maybe the thing that I am going to talk about in this issue of new actions on existing policies with regard to land reforms would take a long time. Please allow me to take this floor to send the Cambodian people this message on land issue on which last Friday, we had conducted a VDO Conference meeting between Phnom Penh and all provinces.
Pol Pot had actually stripped every citizen off his/her land ownership/title. In the early days (after the liberation on January 7, 1979) no one fought for land as they are nowadays. The then Government of the State of Cambodia had in those days, till 1987, provided some resources, money also included, for the people to claim new land. You may see it as the state hired them to claim new land. I am sure people still remember it, especially HE Suy Sem, who worked then in the Ministry of Planning.
However, the situation then was not similar to the present. Our people dared not go far from the city (because of insecurity). We had abundance of arable land and the Government saw that it was a good opportunity for people to claim and work on them. Land reform has always been a challenge for me and I wanted to resolve the problem as quickly as possible for the people’s sake.
Despite my strong commitment and determination, the issue had been too large to deal with. Initially, we were faced with the problem of ownerships from the period prior to 1975. Should we recognize the ownerships from then or the current ones after the liberation? It had become the topic of electoral campaign in 1993 and was also a topic of harsh words exchange between myself and other political faction leaders present in the former Supreme National Council (SNC) in one of the meetings in Paris too. HE Tia Banh, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of National Defense and HE Im Chhun Lim, Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, who were then members of the SNC could have remembered that.
I may as well apologize to the soul of the late Samdech Son San, for what I am going to bring up. I sat next to Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk, while the Khmer Rouge representatives were seated opposite to us in a meeting that was held in what is currently the Cambodian embassy (in France). Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk said “there is nothing to be afraid of and if anything happened, let’s all embrace HE Hun Sen. If the bomb exploded, we should as well be dead together.” There was this issue of bodyguards. I told them to bring theirs but I offered to provide them with weapons.
In that instance, Samdech Son San said to Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk “Your Highness, I have a house in Phnom Penh. But the puppets have taken.” I reacted (you may ask HE Tia Banh, Dit Munti, Hor Namhong, Ieng Mouly) to him (with the presences of Khieu Samphan and Son Sen): “Your Excellency, those who should be held responsible for chasing people out of Phnom Penh are the Khmer Rouge, not me. What else could I do when people entered Phnom Penh and cleaned those houses and occupied. Some of the houses have changed even more than one owner too. Not to mention that you go from France to get back the house, even if I am the Prime Minister, I would not be safe to take those occupied houses from them.”
Samdech Son San then said “I would take up the challenge (of being hacked) as I am now an old man.” That was what then the situation. How many percent of the people in Phnom Penh who actually live in houses belonged to them prior to the liberation? It was a big issue in the field of ownership between 1975 and the present. After a long and thorough discussion, we had come to a conclusion that if we were to revise the ownerships, to recognize the ownerships from before 1975, we might have to evacuate the people in the whole country. That was how the issue had become a hot topic of electoral campaign in 1993.
We then commenced the land reform issue by allowing people who actually resided and worked on a particular place to occupy the land. We called them “possessors.” We then issued them hard and soft, and bird feather-imprinted land possession papers. As you can understand the land reform and ownership/title has not been a new issue for the Cambodian People’s Party or for Hun Sen.
It was in the 1980s that the (State of Cambodia’s) Government issued bird feather-imprinted land possession papers for the people. They have become the basis for land registration and issuance of land titles and ownerships these days. We all, however, must understand that between now and then we have come away twenty years. The Cambodian population has grown from between 7 or 8 millions then to some 14 millions now. Land issue has become a pressing issue and urgent consideration must be made on providing them with more land in some areas in addition to process of social land concession.
As of now I learn that all provinces are getting down to work already. Yesterday I called to a number of provincial governors but I could not reach some. They maybe were on their ways to Phnom Penh. I talked to Sar Chamrong, governor of Kratie, I called to Cheang Am, governor of Svay Rieng, to Kang Hieng, governor of Kompong Speu, etc. I called to Ung Oeung of Banteay Meanjei and he promised that he would carry out the order in just two months. I have given all provinces a period of six months and if they could do it less than the time provided it is even better.
Now let me detail for you as to what land that the Royal Government will be giving people the rights to own. This is going to be a political message to the people of Cambodia as well as those partners and friends of Cambodia. This is not by any means an indicator of international pressure on Hun Sen. In fact this is an indication of the Royal Government (of Cambodia)’s commitment on the issue of land reform. Where are the lands to be given out to the people? In fact three types of lands are for giving out to people in no longer than six months.
The first category is what we know it to be Forest Land Concession. We learn that some of the land has been owned by the people already while some has not. I may clarify that the forest land concession is not (economic) land concession. The forest land concession characterizes those former forest concession lands which have been ordered to halt since 2000.
You may have noticed now that there are no more sights of heavy trucks carrying logs as in between 1993 and 1998. There are still some hidden theft of logging and trading Kranhoung (a kind of Cambodian rosewood) though. Logging and transporting of heavy logs are no more and (the Royal Government’s) order is there to stay. I wish to see no logging and timber business recurring in Cambodia. Permission is given for logging in production forest for local consumption and not for export.
Let me first divide the forest land concession into two. Firstly, the adjoining area of forest concession land where people already occupied, for instance the case of people taking occupancy on the land that was offered in concession to Samling. It is still the state land though. According to the report by the provincial governor of Kompong Cham, we are talking about 20 or 30 thousand hectare land. Since most of them occupied the land more than five years, and some have been there ten years already, we must cut the land off the concession and give the people their rights to own the land.
You may remember that this incident happened during the flood situation in 2000. Up to the moment of speaking, it is now over ten years already. Some have even built solid structure housing such as tile-roof homes. Some are not sure and waiting to see though. Judging this development I am instructing the trimming of those occupied land off the concession, either from Samling or Kasotim and the like. As people already cultivate in the area we may as well provide them with rights to own the land based on the mechanism of Sub-decree 118 on the state land management. Let’s just make a proposal to the Prime Minister and I will cut the land from the concession for the people.
Secondly, the forest land concession itself. Just now I was talking about those who occupy and cultivate the adjoining area of the forest concession land. What are we going to do now to those of you that are deep inside the forest land concession area? Some already have been given the land titles and some not yet. So for those who have not got the land ownerships yet, two types of ownerships will be provided.
Type A – ownership for each family who actually occupy of no more than five hectares of land will be recognized and provided. The Cambodia’s Land Law allows people to own only five hectares. You may ask so what happen to those who have more than the permitted size. If the household has like ten hectares, we would provide them with the land ownership of five hectares, while five more are to be registered as small-scale economic land concession given out to them.
Type B – a minimum reservation of 10% as the community forest is secured from every forest concession land. I would be even happier if you could secure larger size of forest community for the people. I anticipate one village has one forest attached to it so that villagers could depend on production, firewood for instance.
The people have to understand that the forest community is indeed their own forest for whatever production they may need. They may need to go there for tree sap, leaves for roofing, etc. They may also reserve the forest for use as ecosystem site for tourists and/or planting more trees to make it green. Take what I have done in Kraingyov in Kandal province, where newly married couples will have to plant trees.
Though what I mention is about forest concession land, the same concern also appears relating with protected forest and national forest parks. It has been our practice that we draw up a map in Phnom Penh of what we call the national parks. Having done that we have no idea what impacts that may have on those who reside and depend on the forest areas for their lives. To amend this, we are now leaving the work to be carried out by provincial authorities, in cooperation with those of the districts and communes, who are actually living together with the people, to figure out the existing condition so that proper policy and decision could be made for the people.
The Royal Government is, especially I myself am, ready to approve the requested alignment. As far as that of the National Parks is concerned, we need the Royal Decree and Sub-decree to undo things. All this will depend on how fast the sub-national authorities could process the jobs and papers in providing land ownership rights to the people. The Ministry of Environment has so far organized numerous forest communities in the adjoining areas of national parks, a buffer zone where people depend on for their day to day life. I am seeking the Ministry of Environment to continue with this important job.
Take for instance, the case of protected area of Daun Sam in the province of Battambang. We mapped it out in 1994/95 or before the internal integration of Cambodia, and we have also included the area under the Khmer Rouge’s control. Now we all have to observe and fix things up. The land belongs to the state and the state has no reason to hesitate in resolving the problem. There have been measures and actions but this time it will have to be a whole country’s actions. If you do not have sufficient number of staff to deal with large scale prompt actions, I suggest you contact with the Phnom Penh Student groups.
I urge that HE Im Chhun Lim, Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, to organize appropriate skill training courses for those students to operate the GPS that will be used in measuring the land size. I will cover all expenses involved. Let’s consider it is their practicum too.
The second category is economic land concession. Please allow me to take this opportunity to announce to the people and related actors that on May 7, I issued an order to halt the provision of land concession on certain reasons and the halt would be for a long time. We have to sort things out with all these or we do not give new ones. However, I wish to bring your attention to the notification paper here, as an example, as to what are the criteria for giving out land concession. Here inscribed is my signature and instruction and here is that of the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
Please allow me to read the notification for you so that you have an idea of on what bases and arguments that we grant the companies (economic) land concession. In actual implementation, some companies have abided by the instructions and some do not. Take for instance in this proposal the company requested for 10,015 hectares. While the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) went to visit the requested land, we informed the company that only 7,866 hectares could be provided as we had to cut some 32,000 hectares, according to the report from HE Chan Sarun, in the requested land concession, which are the people’s land.
Despite all this, in the notification of approval, inscription of the Prime Minister’s instruction was as followed: firstly, “aside from the approval of the economic land concession of 7,866 hectares, the following work to be carried out by the company is to cooperate with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and competent authorities to determine the border points of the concessional land and to trim out concerned lands according to actual existence.”
As you can see despite there has been a visit and inspection by the MAFF, the stated 7,866 hectares was also to be reexamined. If the land border encroaches upon people’s land and/or reserved forest areas, more would have to be cut out. You may agree with me that it is not reasonably right action to remove large trees, where local people depend on them for sap and other stuff, and replace them with cassava or rubber. In fact the notification gives ample instructions but certain (companies and related institutions) have not yet fulfilled.
It has been noted that some have intruded into people’s occupation and/or reserved forest areas. As long as it is so, we will cut them all out for the people. Take this notification in point into consideration, out of the remaining 7,866 hectares, more has been cut away and the remaining size now is only 4,000 hectares. Now it is up to the company to decide if they want to do it or not. If they do not accept it, we then have to take them all back.
Secondly, the company must make transference of public state land, and register the land, as private state land in order to sign an investment deal on economic land concession with the MAFF. The state in this case will have to transfer public state land to private state land.
Thirdly, as far as protected land and bushy area buffering along the waterways, which have been cut out, the company will have to protect from damages and losses with legal responsibility. Whereas damages and losses incurred, the Royal Government will annul all existing principles and contracts.
Fourthly, the company will have to register private state land title as required by the legal procedure and will have to make a report on environmental and social impacts after the investment contract is signed. The company has no rights to start preparing the ground until these conditions – environmental impacts, air pollution and first and foremost those on the livelihood of the people – are met.
From hereon the company will have to respect all conditions that are set by guaranteeing that people in investment area will benefit from the project and that the project would freeze in places where conflicts of ownership with the people arise until a proper solution is reached.
As far as this point is concerned we have to look into two elements here. Firstly, the people will benefit (from the stated investment project). I have mentioned this point a long while about what I call the tiger’s (stripe) skin situation. It went as far back as 2001 or 2002. I made it one final address in Kompong Thom’s Tumring in 2008 and the inauguration of the NR 76 at Mondulkiri. Another point that is to be clear here is “all actions will cease immediately if they encounter people’s protest.”
If all of the companies implement according to the instructions inscribed in the notification of approval, there would not be land conflict problems. If they encounter protest in a place, they must stop and move to work in no protest part of the land. The place where there is a protest should be left for negotiation while the people’s side and priority would be given heed to.
Before starting their ground works, the company will have to come up with a clear management and development plan recognized by expertise institutions, and participated by local authorities and people. It reality, we noted that this has not been the case. Local authorities were present only as a witness, and in certain circumstances, district and/or commune leaders, and worse still the people did not even know about it. People in local areas did not know and understand, while in those places there are no boundary markers. To be frank, people know their land very well and for those who actually own the land, they rarely have ownership papers unless they need one to deposit for bank loans.
Finally, prior to the land preparation, the company will have to seek permission from the MAFF, while remaining fallen trees from land preparation in the land concession area will have to be collected and kept according to technical standard defined by the Forest Administration, and settlement and premium must be made to the state in conformity with the Law of Forestry. In every land concession there has to have some kind of forest, where both big and small trees will have to be chopped. They need to be collected and kept while making settlement and premium available to the state.
There are some companies that are living harmoniously with the people and besides providing people with jobs they are going to apply job skill integration too. Once the infrastructures are in place, people will send their children for jobs in the place. With land that they have people will also plant the crops – such as sugarcane, etc. – that are needed for factory that the company is setting up. Company may provide them with seeds, techniques in cultivation, etc. If everything works according to the instructions, our economic land concession will do our country a world of good.
Look to Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, they have millions of hectares of rubber. They also remove forest and replant them. We could do that too but we did not do it properly as instructed by the Royal Government.
As in video conference the other day, immediate actions must be taken to measure land for people applying the two models. Type A – provide people with actual size of occupation and cultivation; and Type B – reserve 10% for their community needs. I am of the thought that what we are planning to do now – giving land and land ownerships to the people – is so easy a job. What is difficult is if we had to take the land back from the people. I am sure related institutions and officials are getting themselves ready now. If you are not doing your work, I would come out myself.
You are not allowed to make a deal of any sort with companies. I also warn our people from encroaching cultivated land of the company and occupying them because of the Prime Minister’s statement. I would not let that pass. In some place, like Kompong Damrey, where they organized protest, blocked roads and infiltrated for occupancy, I think that has gone too far and there would not be an understanding for that kind of extreme actions.
The Royal Government, let me assure you, has got its land policy. If you are in need of land, the Royal Government would provide land on social concession for you. I have in mind some 10,000 to 20,000 hectares for giving out to the people, judging by the population growth indicator. In the 1980s, in my house there are only my wife, I and my eldest son, Manet. The situation now is different. I have five children, five children-in-law, which make ten, plus 13 grandchildren. The same is true for our people while in the 1980s, there are only two peoples in their family, they have more now.
It is in this respect that we have diverted our development from extensive to intensive, while resolving issues of irrigation and techniques to increase yields of rice on same rice fields. We are doing it in such a way that on the same land size we used to feed five people can now feed twice or thrice the number. This should also include the reservation of new land for more people. It is a land policy of the Royal Government, but frankly speaking of the Cambodian People’s Party. The policy has not been wrong but the actions are. That is why I am defining it as “taking new actions on existing policies” and we will do it together at the same time throughout the country.
I may ask HE Sar Kheng, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Interior, as we had a discussion already the other day on video link: where there is a concentration of people but it has not become a village yet, let’s set up one for them. If they have mobilized together some twenty or thirty families, let’s set up a village for them. It will take a short time for those families to grow bigger, and therefore bigger villages. There has been high concentration of population in some provinces – like Kandal, Kompong Cham, Prey Veng – as in some villages there are up to a thousand families.
The third category is the state land property, which people illegally occupy. We could recall that anarchic occupation of state land happened uncontrollably and the state has had to issue orders to take the land back. However, on reality, a few paid heed to the order while the majority chose to stay.
I went to Banteay Meanjei and Siem Reap and I learnt of a few cases. In Siem Reap I summoned the Head of Forestry Sector to present the statistics of the land that we took back from (cases of) illegal occupations. In the statistics, the total land confiscated was 49,000 hectares. I asked him, where are the land now? He told me people are actually occupying them. I asked more officials. They gave me the same answers. So, what we say it to be coverage of forest, it no longer exists, only cassava, maize, bean, etc. So, let’s leave the forest coverage of 2002 alone. As the people are here to occupy them now, let’s give them the ownership titles.
What we are doing every day is to give out thousands hectares of land on social concession to the people. We measure size, make plan, mobilize people with identifications to be selected at random to occupy it and to even clear the land for them. While tens of thousands of families already occupy the land, why else shall we make random selection? Just go in and build them roads, schools, hospitals, etc. I would urge HE Sar Kheng to instruct officials to do that in the case of Boeng Pram and Roneam Daun Sam. Let’s make a village for them.
Once the ownership rights are given out, you may want to wait and see there will be many tile-roof houses going up. They will have grown various fruit trees, and the rate of poverty would lower too. I would urge HE Chhay Than, Minister of Planning, which involves in following up the poverty rate, to go on with this work of socio-economic survey, particularly those areas after we provide them with ownership rights to see the difference they will be making to their living condition and standard.
I think we will meet our people’s aspiration and would urge them not to create conflicts about land boundary and/or to encroach upon others to enlarge what they have. What has been from May 8, the day the order comes into force officially, must be kept.
For the moment we could not issue our people hard ownership titles but primary title papers will be printed for the people. I would urge Banks and Microfinance associations to recognize and treat the primary titles as equally legal as that of the hard titles in their banking loan process. For the primary land ownership titles to become hard land ownership titles is only a matter of time. The final land ownership titles, which could have been printing now, will be given at any time later.
We will have to deal with this issue using the Sub-decree 118, which is relating to state land management. We have already delegated the power and task of issuing land titles to the provincial Head of Office of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction. We also have the Sub-decree 118 that guides on the formula of giving related functions to the provincial governors. Now that we have given the governors the power, I hope they would do a pretty good job for the people, or I would have to come set up the tent myself.
I think the provincial governors are happy now. Now HE Im Chhun Lim will have to be active together with the provincial governors and send out topography staff. Some people said what Hun Sen does is to gather supports and votes. I may respond to them that being in power I am thinking of the people’s interest more than you are for the votes. I heard that in Kompot there are also actions to mobilize people to occupy community land. I am warning you not to set up a state within a state. A commune is not a state. A district is not a state. The province is not too. We have only one state – Cambodia. There are neither secessions nor illegally powerful persons.
The circular 02 dated February 26, 2007 defies on illegal occupation of state land and orders confiscation. Still, in point sixth, we have a policy that goes: “the landless, poor, vulnerable family/person who illegally occupies the state land is entitled to no indemnity, but the Royal Government could allow them an appropriate size of land for cultivation or residence as is defined in point seven of the circular.” What we have come up in point seven about giving land to people is not by chance. So, you may reconsider your allegations that all we did is for gaining supports or votes.
That is not what they thought and said it is. (I have) done everything from the time when people died every day to the time people are saved and now free from war and in development. In my term of power and as long as Hun Sen is in power, people will get their share of land. You (in the opposition) do not have the rights yet. I also make it clear to our people that no one could, besides the Royal Government, give you the rights to own the land. You may support the opposition or join with so and so NGOs, but it is the rule that you have to bring your attention to the sub-national level authorities and legal state institutions. The opposition parties could give recommendations but they do not have rights to grant you anything as they do not have it.
Let me make it clear too that for all three categories of land mentioned above, actions must be taken swiftly. The day after tomorrow I will leave for Mexico and I will review that on video conference when I return to find out what has been done and what remains to be taking care of. Please allow me to reiterate and urge HE Im Chhun Lim once again about the topography staff. As for the students who will get involved, I will cover their expenses. In some provinces, as far as I am informed, they may have their staff ready too.
Now is issue of social land concession. This job is to be continuing. All land that are confiscated from failed companies in economic land concession projects last year and this year, HE Chan Sarun may note this, will be given to the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction. This year we have taken the land back from five more companies and they will be kept for giving out as land on social concession. I urge people who are in need of land to request it but not to use threat of any kind as what happened in Kbal Chhay, where hundreds of houses were built overnight and claimed to have been there since 1982.
How could various human rights organizations and the like believe so when in 1982 the place was actually battlefield? How could they make so damn allegation that the Government is killing its own people? Take for instance, what happened in the commune of Prama is that they mobilized people to build thousands of cottages and declared dissolving the authorities and acted as if they were with rights and power to give land to people, who had to become members of Association of the Democrats. Would a country of yours allow this? An association declared itself to be a state. I think the human rights commission in Phnom Penh also went to see it. You may ask those people in the place if the state took away their land. Luckily, despite all that those people could finally go to vote (in the communal councilor elections).
In this case people have been misled by some chieftains in Phnom Penh and they are under arrest warrants. They do not recognize the village, communal administration and placed a barricade at entry forcing people to become its members. Warrants of arrest have been issued for five peoples. I urge them to step out and confess so that they could be relieved of their wrongdoings. No matter where you are, extradition will be coming to you.
We will go for them no matter where they may be. At the same time I am regretful for the death of a young girl in cracking down the anarchic people. We are regretful for losing flesh and blood of Cambodians and share her family’s grief and condolence. This is nothing though compared to those who have committed various mistakes like wrong target bombings which killed many people in Afghanistan but no one dare condemn them. Maybe it is now time to understand about Cambodia and Cambodians. Let’s stop tell others to be clean while you are so dirty.
In the old days, under the regime of Sangkum Reastrniyum, people were sent from the plain areas to settle in highland areas. In 1985/86, I went to Takeo and sent 100 teachers to Ratanakiri province. Only six stay there now. In the 1980s, we spent money for people to reclaim land but now they have done it themselves. I also advise our people not to claim land anymore (without the permission of the state). You now can demand for social land concession, which after five years it will be yours. I would urge the Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction to give it a size larger like two or three hectares as they may have bigger family sooner or later. If they could grow rubber altogether, it will be marvelous for Cambodia.
Let’s wait for the reaction to this message. They may say what power does Hun Sen possess that he could give land to the people? It is the power given to me by the people. If I do not have rights to give land to people, I do not need to be a Prime Minister. They said something in support of our policy of fishery reform but also sought to their gain that that was what they have proposed long time ago. How could that be as this happened since when her/his party was not even born yet? S/he did not become a member of the National Assembly yet. It is not even more so if they claim it to be carried out because of pressure from the opposition parties or international community.
As far as ownership titles to water territory and islands, I am leaving them for further study and thorough legal consideration by the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction. As of the moment, people are entitled to two out of the three rights – rights to reside, rights to use but not rights to own yet. It is in this context that people do not have ownership titles yet. Take for instance, shall we or shall we not give ownership titles on land in the lake of Tonle Sap? It is a huge issue. We still have islands in the sea, what do we go about doing with them? As of now we only provide them with rights to use and reside but not own, only all of which could make it ownership title.
Leaving the lake of Tonle Sap aside, some places in the Kandal’s districts of Sa Ang, Koh Thom, and places like them, where residents spend six moths on land and another six months on water, but all fishery lots have been removed, ownership titles could be given. Some kind of certification must be given for them to ascertain their residence and use in specified areas in the lake of Tonle Sap so that no one would disturb their livings.
Let me assert here to HE Im Chhun Lim about illegal occupation of state land. For these cases we need to make transferences from public state land to private state land according to the circular 02. Public state land, which has been regained from illegal occupation, according to the circular, could not be object of sale, long-term lease, giving out as concession or as private ownership. Therefore, forest covered land which is illegally occupied must be transferred from public state land to private state land so that they could be given out to people. As far as the economic land concession is concerned, such transference has been done already. All we need to do is to issue a notification of approval and to measure size of land for the people./.