User login

Details Released about Sihanoukville Islands Development Lease

By: Nguon Sovan and The Mekong Times Posted: February-29-2008 in
Nguon Sovan and The Mekong Times

The government has released the details of two private companies that have been given permission to develop two of the 22 islands off Sihanoukville. The 99-year lease agreements were inked yesterday by representatives of the government and private firms.

Commerce Minister and Deputy Chairman of the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) Cham Prasidh signed one agreement with Kith Meng, CEO of the Royal Group, to lease the 7,826 hectare Koh Rong island as an ecotourism resort. Etienne Chenevier, director of the Singapore-based City Star Private Equity Asia company, signed another lease on a 76 hectare portion of the 137 hectare Koh Russey island.

Suon Sithy, secretary-general of the CDC, said the Koh Rong plan is the bigger development, estimating its value at over a billion dollars.

Plans for the development of Koh Rong must be submitted to the CDC for approval within 18 months of the signing date, Suon Sithy said. The US$48 million Koh Russey development plan must be submitted within one year, he added.

Both developments will be subject to stringent environmental protection requirements, Suon Sithy assured.

"Investment and protected areas must be clearly identified in the master- plans to avoid any deforestation on the islands," he said.

Chenevier told local press that Koh Russey is small and idyllic, best suited to low-rise city development. The company will not damage any forest, he stressed, saying that the development would be "very respectful to the environment."

Opposition SRP lawmaker Yim Sovann said the government's bidding process should have been more transparent, saying: "This act has no transparency and makes the government lose money, which falls into the pocket of private individuals."

Sihanoukville Deputy Governor Sboang Sarath expressed hope that the investment would attract more tourists to Sihanoukville.

Nguon Sovan is a reporter for the Mekong Times


Whats on! See our help pages - add your own events

This location does not have any events. Why not add one here!