Land conflicts between Economic Land Concessions and smallholder farmers in Bousra commune (Cambodia): What Are the Policy Implications? | Land Portal
Land conflicts between Economic Land Concessions and smallholder farmers in Bousra commune (Cambodia

Resource information

Date of publication: 
January 2020
Resource Language: 
ISBN / Resource ID: 
Case Study Series #2

In 2007-8, the Cambodian government granted Economic Land Concessions (ELC) to two rubber companies, namely Socfin-KCD and Dak Lak Mondulkiri Aphivath in Bousra commune, Mondulkiri province. Through a comparative approach, the Case study examines the impact of these rubber concessions on local land tenure systems. It examines how each company took into consideration the land claims of affected people and communities, and the effectiveness of the conflict resolution approach.

These examples tell a story of enclosure and conflicts that has spanned over a decade in a context of dynamic agricultural modernization driven by boom crop markets and fuelled by in-migration. Both companies have had a significant negative impact on local land tenure and labour patterns. Local people have lost access to resources that are central to their livelihoods. In response to claims, the two companies have used different approaches to conflict resolution. The core difference lies in their level of recognition of local land claims inside the ELC and their willingness to allow space for local farmers within the concession.

As ELCs continue to occupy a large space in the rural landscape and to be central in the life of a large number of smallholders, this Case Study provides examples and recommendations to enhance ELC management, particularly in respect of the place of smallholder farmers and role they play in relation to concession investments.

Note a response from Socfin-KCD about this report on their corporate website at this link:

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Chan Sophal, Ngorn Chansovy, Hour Thany, and Hem Metta


Project Description

Land governance is at the center of development challenges in Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam. Governments are revising land policies and practices in order to face these challenges. The project aims to (i) assist the emergence of more favorable policies and practices for securing the rights and access of family farmers to land and natural resources; and (ii) to strengthen the effectiveness of concerned stakeholders through learning, alliance building and regional cooperation.