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5.3 Protected Area System (PAS)

The Ministry of the Environment (MoE) is also involved in forestry management in several ways. The MoE has the authority for the development and implementation of 23 protected areas in Cambodia which were established by Royal Decree “Creation and Designation of Protected Areas” signed on November the First 1993 by Sihanouk with assistance from IUCN, covering 3.5 million hectares or 19% of the country (See Figure 2). The MoE is required to provide the necessary protection and conservation measures in line with protected areas management. A full assessment of the needs of protected areas management in Cambodia is the subject of a joint UNDP/IUCN project entitled “Capacity Building in Protected Areas Management and Biodiversity Planning”.

PAS classifies areas into four categories: wildlife sanctuaries; national parks; protected landscapes and multiple use areas (See Table 4). Two National parks have presently been inaugurated (Ream, in Kompong Som province and Kirrirom in Kompong Speu). The Department of Nature Conservation and Protection (MoE) has the leading role in the planning and implementation of the PAS and are presently working on the management plans for the two national parks. All PAS are located in highly insecure areas (Le Billon, pers. Comm. 1994) suggesting that PAS is a means for the RGC to gain control (on paper at least) of remote areas (pers. comm 1995). PAS areas are also surrounded by concessions areas and are at severe risk of encroachment by the timber companies and in any event will be adversely affected as “islands” in a deforested landscape (Press Briefing Dec 1995) (See Figure 2). At least six of Cambodia’s “protected areas”, those situated along the Thai-Khmer border are in areas of Khmer Rouge control and are already being extensively logged (Global Witness, 1996). Other protected areas are also surrounded by timber concessions and thus subject to uncontrolled logging infractions by timber companies.

Table 3: Companies Involved in Logging Concessions


1 Pelico Thailand 381,611 ha Granted

2 Colexim Cambodia & Russia 147,187 ha Granted

3 Mc Gate Indonesia 137,475 ha Granted

4 Casotim Cambodia & Russia 131,380 ha Granted

5 Oitama Overseas 119,700 ha Granted

6 BLP (Import/Export) Thailand 91,200 ha Granted

7 PanLaochavi Thailand 86,200 ha Granted

8 Wanchai Thailand 129,260 ha Granted

9 Double Ace Malaysia 177,500 ha Granted

10 Samling Malaysia 787,810 ha Granted

11 Cambodia Timber

Products Cambodia 54,784 ha Granted
Total of 11 Concessions 2,244,107 ha
12 Samron Wood Singapore 200,500 ha Forwarded from Ministry of Agriculture to CDC

13 Sokoclarid Cambodia 171,305 ha

14 Shinwa Japan 148,000 ha Being forwarded to


15 King Wood Taiwan 63,100 ha Passed by Council

of Ministers

16 Mekong Cambodia 108,560 ha At Ministry of Agriculture

17 Geometric Holdings Malaysia 245,700 ha Being examined by Council of Ministers

18 Lang Song Taiwan 132,000 ha Being forwarded to

Ministry of


19 Camico Singapore 56,500 ha At Ministry of Agriculture

20 King Wood Taiwan 63,100 ha Passed by Council of Ministers

21 Doncam Korea 103,750 ha At Ministry of Agriculture

22 Chemdarply Wood Taiwan 103,300 ha Being examined by Council of Ministers

23 Geometric Holdings Malaysia 245,700 ha Being examined by

Council of Ministers

24 Macro-Pannin Indonesia 1,432,930 ha Passed by Council of Ministers

25 Super Wood Malaysia 94,419 ha Being examined by Council of Ministers

26 Grand Atlantic Malaysia 365,500 ha Passed by Council of Ministers

27 Mienleeheng 198,500 ha Already forwarded to CDC

28 Fuchan Taiwan 297,000 ha Forwarded to CDC

29 Elivud Taiwan {No forest left to allocate}

30 Hero Taiwan {

Area Covered by 19 Concessions 4,219,914 ha

Total Area Covered by Concessions 6,464,021 ha


Protected Areas = 3,402,200 ha By decree November 1993

By Documentation after 1970

Evergreen 3,955,300 ha }6,459,300 ha

Semi-Evergreen 2,504,000 ha }

Clear 5,296,700 ha

Pine 17,800 ha

According to Land Cover Atlas 1992-3

Evergreen 4,852,700 ha } 5,965,700 ha

Mixed Forest 1,113,000 ha }

Deciduous Forest 4,367,900 ha

Pine 8,200 ha


Source: “Corruption, War and Forest Policy. The Unsustainable Exploitation of Cambodia’s Forests.” Briefing document by Global Witness, February 1996. Translation of RGC Ministry of Agriculture Concession document.

Table 4: Cambodia’s Protected Area System on Paper.

Protected Area



National Parks

1 Kirirom (1)

Kompong Speu

35, 000 ha

2 Phnom Kulen (2)

Siem Reap/Preah Vihear

37, 500 ha

23 Dong Peng (20)

Koh Kong

27, 700 ha

Numbers in brackets indicate the location of the protected areas as numbered in Figure 2.
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