Government pushes for land registration by 2021

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The government is pushing for all land registration to be completed by 2021. POST PIX

The government is pushing for all land registration to be completed by 2021, a move which the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction says will curtail land disputes and boost real estate tax revenue for the government.

During the closing ceremony of the 2018 Results and 2019 Goals Meeting of the Tbong Khmum provincial administration on Tuesday, Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Chea Sophara said registration is currently around 73 per cent, equal to 5.1 million plots among the nation’s seven million registered plots.

Land registration is a government policy to systemically control Cambodia’s land management, the minister added.

Sophara said once land registry has been completed, land disputes are expected to fall, and the state may also see an increase in income from land tax payments.

“Registration is very important because it will be capital for people who have their documents in hand,” he said, adding that those who do not have land titles are vulnerable and may be at risk.

“My plan is for it to be completed by 2021.”

Sophara also urged the Ministry of Interior to help in the land registration process.

“Before, land was not worth the price, but now it has led to a gold rush. Therefore, registration will help reduce land disputes,” he said.

‘Don’t sell, rent’

Sophara cited Sihanoukville as an example and encouraged people to rent out land rather than sell it.

“I told the [provincial] department [of Land Management] to advise the people of Sihanoukville to not sell their land. I said they should rent it out because after 15-20 years of leasing, they will still own the land. If the land is sold to others, it’s completely over,” he said.

Cambodian Valuers and Estate Agents Association (CVEA) president Chrek Soknim said land

registration is important as it not only helps prevent land disputes, but it also contributes to raising tax revenues, helps make the real estate market more robust, as well as increases the Kingdom’s attractiveness to foreign investors.

“It will be a compass to help identify areas for long-term development,” he said.