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Hun Sen wants pristine coastal areas preserved

Pech Sotheary / Khmer Times Share:
ochheuteal beach
Ochheuteal Beach in Sihanoukville, Cambodia. Photo Supplied

Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed the governors of the coastal provinces to protect and maintain the beauty of the coasts, prevent wastewater from flowing into the sea and continue to develop the necessary infrastructure for tourism.

He noted the Kingdom will be hosting an international cycling race next year and the Congress of the World’s Most Beautiful Bays Club in 2022 in these provinces:  Koh Kong, Kampot, Preah Sihanouk and Kep.

Speaking at the opening of the 8th Sea Festival in Kampot province on Saturday, Mr Hun Sen urged the governors to pay attention to the protection of sea waters and ensure they do not become polluted.

He also told them to preserve mangrove forests and the natural environment in the coastal areas to remain among the world’s most beautiful bays.

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Prime Minister Hun Sen delivers a speech in Phnom Penh. KT/ Khem Sovannara

“We have to work hard to protect our bays to prevent them from being damaged due to the wastewater flowing into the sea, reclamation work and deforestation of mangrove areas for land encroachment,” Mr Hun Sen noted. “Therefore, these are the issues that [authorities] of each province have to tackle and closely monitor.”

He also advised the governors in the four provinces to continue to build necessary infrastructures such as roads, railways, waterways, airports, electricity connection, water supply and tourism resorts.

Mr Hun Sen added that they must also continue to crack down on crime such as theft, drug trafficking and use as well as increase security for tourists.

The Prime Minister also ordered the Agriculture and Environment ministers to collaborate and jointly monitor and conserve seabed resources, noting that he has always rejected requests for seaweed plantation investment in Cambodia.

Kampot provincial governor Cheav Tay said at the event that the provincial administration, in collaboration with relevant ministries and institutions, has been working hard on infrastructure development, such as road construction and renovation, drainage, electricity connection, environmental sanitation, beach development and planting trees for beauty.

“For the Sea Festival, the provincial administration has advised government officials, armed forces personnel, citizens, vendors and service providers to make national and international tourists feel more welcome,” he noted.

Tourism Minister Thong Khon said at the event that Cambodia became a member of the World’s Most Beautiful Bays Club in 2011 and was subsequently appointed as its vice president in charge of the Asia-Pacific region for two mandates from 2012 to 2015 and again until 2018.

He added that the Kingdom was picked to host the 18th Congress of the World’s Most Beautiful Bays Club in 2022, and will also host its inaugural international cycling race from January 4 to January 6.

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