PUBLISHED: 27 August 2019
Cambodia’s new mining law is on track for adoption by the end of this year and will introduce a raft of reforms to the sector although the country’s mining tax will likely remain the same. It will add on to the existing Law on Mineral Resource Management and Exploitation from 2001. The law aims to introduce predictability and transparency in the Kingdom’s mining sector, which has long struggled against illegal mining and idle mining licensees who spend years occupying potentially valuable space without extracting. Non-tax “incentives” would likely be part of the new law, such as beefing up Cambodia’s scattered database of maps and statistics on what lies below the ground. Modeled on the West Australian Mining Act, the new law aims to level the playing field for mining companies by replacing the current contractual system for getting mining and exploration licenses with a concession system. Instead of having to negotiate for rights, under the new law all companies seeking to mine in Cambodia will have the same rights. The regulations will also penalize companies that misbehave.