Economic Land Concessions and Local Communities

TitleEconomic Land Concessions and Local Communities
Annotated RecordNot Annotated
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsSothath N, Sophal C, Cambodian_Economic_Association(CEA)
Paginationi-vii, 1-63
Place PublishedPhnom Penh
Key themesAccessToJustice, Dispossession-grabbing, FDI

Evidences from all the four case studies in Cambodia suggest that the granting of Economic Land Concessions (ELCs) usually overlapped the land local people claimed. The scope of overlapping ranges from farmland to homestead land. Indigenous People communities in particular are prone to such overlapping due to their conventional land use such as practice of shifting cultivation and their livelihoods are also vulnerable since they are more reliant on common resources such as forest. The overlap between the ELCs and the community people’s lands leads to land conflicts between the company and the villagers. These conflicts mainly result from the way in which the ELCs are granted. In general, the granting process of the ELCs does not comply with the procedure outlined in the Sub-decree on ELCs. The evidence reveals that the site identification of the ELCs is usually not participatory, or in other words, public consultation with territorial authorities and the local people were not conducted. On the other hand, while the Sub-decree requires the ESIA be completed before the granting of the ELCs, in many cases the ESIA were only conducted following the ELC lease agreement. Moreover, the quality of the ESIA is not good though it was studied prior to the contract. However, the study also finds that land conflicts in some cases are also due to encroachment from the local residents and the immigrant settlers.


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