Millions of Cambodian farmers receive land titles under state plan

Cambodia is moving fast to provide millions of land titles to farmers in an effort to reduce conflicts over territory in the Southeast Asian nation, a senior government official said. About 770,000 Cambodians — more than five percent of the population — have been affected by land conflicts pitting small farmers against plantation owners in the past 15 years, according to human rights lawyers. Restoring tenure has been one of the government’s top priorities with more than 400,000 small farmers given the official paperwork to secure land ownership each year, said Seng Laut, spokesman for Cambodia’s Land Ministry. The authorities have issued 4.3 million titles in the last two decades and are on track to meeting their goal of seven million land title deeds by 2023, Laut said. “When all of the land plots are registered, the conflicts will be over,” Laut told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an interview at his office in the capital, Phnom Penh. “We want to speed up land registration that makes land property safe.”

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