Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Ministry, Chinese firm spar over Siem Reap mine

Ministry, Chinese firm spar over Siem Reap mine

Ministry, Chinese firm spar over Siem Reap mine

The Ministry of Mines and Energy is currently working to withdraw the licence of a copper mining company in Siem Reap province’s Chi Kraeng district that it accuses of operating illegally for more than a year.

The Siem Reap Provincial Court finally shut down operations at Meng Xin Hong Fa (Cambodia) Resources Investment Co about two weeks ago, some 15 months after its operating licence expired, and four months after it was allegedly intercepted by Kampong Thom province authorities as it attempted to illegally ship about 40 tonnes of refined copper to Phnom Penh, according to Meng Saktheara, secretary of state at the ministry.

“We are checking the legal procedures with the intention of cancelling the contract, because the company stole national resources and must not be allowed to run anymore,” he said. “The contract is very likely to end.”

Meng Xin Hong Fa applied for a new licence around the time its old one expired in October 2014 but, as the company’s business was growing, the ministry ordered it to suspend its operations until it had conducted new impact assessments and improved the standards of its mines and processing facility. The company, however, allegedly continued to mine some 3,000 tonnes of unprocessed copper ore, Saktheara said.

The ministry has sued the company for transporting copper without permission and for operating without a licence.

Khorn Sokal, the provincial investigating judge, said that the copper had been seized as evidence, and the company had been ordered to appear for questioning in the coming days, though no arrests have been made.

A staffer from the company declined to comment.

MOST VIEWED

  • Construction begins on $1.5B Kampot seaport

    The International Multi-Purpose Logistics and Port Centre, principally invested by Kampot Logistics and Port Co Ltd and projected to cost $1.5 billion, has officially broken ground in Bokor town, Kampot province. The multi-purpose logistics and port centre, located in Prek Tnaot commune, will be built on

  • Cambodia eyes key role in electronics, auto hubs in SEA

    Two roadmaps, part of the LDC’s economic diversification plan, were designed to see it through its migration process, but experts say the journey might be arduous, particularly in the presence of two established hubs in the region By 2028, Cambodia hopes to have exited the

  • Hun Neng, lawmaker and PM’s brother, passes away aged 72

    Hun Neng, chairman of the 4th Commission of the National Assembly, has passed away from heart disease at the age of 72 on the afternoon of May 5, according to the Ministry of Information. Hun Neng is the older brother of Prime Minister Hun Sen, and was

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • PM meets with US business giants

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has met with a number of major US companies who have expressed interest in investing in Cambodia, in a meeting convened by the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC). A delegation of companies – including Amazon, Meta, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Ford, Visa and Pernod

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with