Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Charcoal trade unlawful: NGO



Charcoal trade unlawful: NGO

Trucks carry charcoal in Battambang.
Trucks carry charcoal in Battambang on Friday. Photo Supplied

Charcoal trade unlawful: NGO

Between 40 and 80 tonnes of charcoal, made from trees logged inside protected areas of community forests in Battambang’s Samlot district, have been illegally exported to Thailand over the last year, an NGO officer said yesterday.

Chan Socheat, an operational officer of the Maddox Jolie-Pitt Foundation, said that for the past year, trucks have been exporting coal through a checkpoint in Samlot without any interception by local authorities or border officers. Socheat said the truck drivers did not have licenses, but told him they paid authorities who guard the road.

“This really damages much of our natural resources,” he said.

Chheun Chhorn, an ethnic community representative, said Samlot was home to many charcoal kilns – mud huts used to turn wood into coal over several weeks. He explained that locals and migrants have been secretly logging, first stripping the land surrounding, and now within, the Phnom Samkos Wildlife Sanctuary.

“As far as I know, the exportation seems to be conducted illegally. The local authority just allows it to happen,” said Prak Phan, head of Cambodia-Thailand Border Communication at checkpoint 400. However, he emphasised that he had not been at the checkpoint lately, and couldn’t verify this.

Legal exportation requires permission from the forestry administration.

District police chief Ly Buoy said that he was not aware of the issue, while the district governor could not be reached.

MOST VIEWED

  • ‘Education’ a priority traffic-law penalty

    A top National Police official on June 21 neither rejected nor confirmed the authenticity of a leaked audio message, which has gone viral on social media, on a waiver of fines for a number of road traffic-related offences. General Him Yan, deputy National Police chief in

  • Pursat Ford assembly plant opens

    The Kingdom’s first Ford assembly plant was inaugurated on June 16 in Pursat province amid rising demand for brand-new vehicles among Cambodians. The facility is seen as a game changer for the domestic automobile industry, which could bring a wave of investors seeking to cash

  • Volunteer scheme to foster ‘virtuous’ humanitarian spirit

    A senior education official said volunteer work contributes to solidarity and promotes a virtuous humanitarian spirit among the youth and communities. Serei Chumneas, undersecretary of state at the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, made the comment during the opening of a training programme called “

  • Siem Reap’s $18M zoo said to educate public, help wildlife

    Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium Co Ltd has invested $18 million in a zoo in Siem Reap province, which will be opened in October to educate and promote animal conservation as well as attract national and international tourists. Currently, the Angkor Wildlife and Aquarium is building the

  • $50B infrastructure plan en route

    The government’s upcoming $50 billion,10-year infrastructure master plan will provide tremendous investment opportunities for domestic and foreign entities, transport experts and economists say. Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol revealed the plan to Japanese ambassador to Cambodia Masahiro Mikami on June 15. At

  • Chinese firms unveil preliminary results on metro, monorail for capital

    Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol and representatives from China Road and Bridge Corp (CRBC) and its parent company, the state-owned China Communications Construction Co Ltd (CCCC), met on June 24 for talks on results of the firms’ preliminary study on a potential metro