In the eyes of the government, investors and power brokers, land is perhaps the most important resource in Cambodia. The thirst for land has resulted in the shredding of forests, filling up of essential lakes, reclamation of the sea and destruction of natural resources.
Cambodian citizens have been affected or involved in at least 120 land conflicts across the country in the four years from 2019 to 2023. These incidents span nearly all of the country’s 25 provinces and municipalities, and mostly involve state land that was transferred to companies, tycoons, connected individuals and government officials and their family members.
Kamnotra is continually updating In Dispute with new incidents and filling in details for past events. (The data should not be considered complete.)
Click on the red markers (or the table below) to learn about these conflicts. Click outside the margins to close a popup. Major land concessions are shaded in yellow, while protected areas have a dotted orange pattern.
Land ownership in Cambodia is not as simple as paying for a deed. The strength of a person’s claim to land depends on the kind of land title they have and which government office granted it.
The 2001 Land Law, which came about as the result of a controversial World Bank-influenced process, underpins Cambodians’ fraught ownership of land and the government’s mass land privatization drive.
As of Kamnotra’s launch, a total of 120 land disputes across the country have been identified from news reports between 2019 and 2023, encompassing more than 260 incidents such as petitions, protests, arrests and government interventions.