Sunday, December 07, 2008

Cambodia Considers Allowing Foreign Ownership of Property

Friday, December 05, 2008
Global Property Guide

Cambodia real estate values are in freefall, and officials may soon allow foreigners to purchase buildings, though foreign ownership of land is still out of the question. For more information, read the following article from Global Property Guide:

Cambodia’s housing market is plummeting, and the government is considering a new law to allow foreigners to own buildings.

In 2005, the government amended an investment law to allow foreign ownership of buildings. However Cambodia’s property market was then experiencing one of the biggest booms in Asia. As a result, the law was never implemented and the idea floundered.

The boom saw prices surge 25 percent to 40 percent annually from 2004 to 2007. Land price increases were at first confined to Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, but the boom spread right across Cambodia. Other hot spots have been the border areas with Vietnam and Thailand and, to a lesser extent, Laos.

The capital’s most sought after locations fetched US$500 per square metre in 2000, but were sold at around US$4,000 or more per square metre along Norodom Boulevard, and US$2,500 per square metre in the central residential neighbourhood of Boeung Keng Kang (BKK).

A downturn started in July 2007 after the government announced new investment guidelines for developers.

Then in mid-2008, the bubble burst. The global financial crisis had hit Cambodia’s biggest investor, South Korea, and Korean investors began pulling out foreign assets to increase liquidity.

Real estate sales plummeted 30 percent to 50 percent from a year earlier.

To prevent the market from sliding further, the government is considering moves to allow foreigners to fully own buildings. Land ownership is still out of the question.

The housing boom

Cambodia has just witnessed one of the biggest real estate booms in Asia.

The reasons are obvious, as soon as you visit Cambodia. Phnom Penh is an attractive colonial city, with broad avenues, charming housing, a hip and young atmosphere, and a riverfront view. Siem Riep, which houses Angkor Wat, is even more charming, and has a cooler, more agreeable climate. There are agreeable beachfronts at Sihanoukville.

Cambodia is in a strategic position in the centre of IndoChina. Prices are laughably inexpensive (from a foreign perspective) and economic growth is exploding. The combination is hard to argue with.

Rentals are far higher than in days when Phnom Penh was a sleepy outpost where the only foreigners worked for aid organizations. In BKK I, according to a report in the Bangkok Post dated March 2008, a spacious, four-bedroom apartment with gym, swimming pool, parking and 24-hour security is on the market for US$3,000 a month. Nearby, the owners of a two-story, four-bedroom villa are looking for US$5,000 per month.

Phnom Penh has, as a result, experienced a construction boom. The government is aggressively pro-development, and squatters and other eyesores are simply cleared away, by a government which is in league with wealthy developers.

Part of the charm may be about to be lost as Phnom Penh succumbs to development. A 42-story US$250 million twin condominium, twice as high as Phnom Penh’s current tallest building, is being built in the most conspicuous position possible—at a busy corner leading to the city's Independence Monument. Residential units in the ‘Gold Tower 42’ project, which will not be completed till 2011, range from US$459,000 to US$1,500,000, according to developer Yon Woo Cambodia Co. Around 70 percent of the buyers are Cambodian. Around 40 percent of the sales have gone to speculative investors.

World City Co. Ltd., a South Korean company, is investing US$2 billion to build a satellite city called Camko City on a 120-hectare (300-acre) in northwest Phnom Penh. The single biggest foreign direct investment in to date, Camko City will include residential units, villas, condominiums, commercial and public facilities, trade and financial centres, office buildings, shopping centres, hotels, schools and hospitals. The project will include about 500 apartments with price tags ranging from US$112,000 to US$1.8 million a unit. Construction will take 3 1/2 years to complete. Nearly half of the units have already been sold.

Land values in Siem Reap have risen 25 percent to 30 percent every year for the last four years at least. The average price of land per square metre is now around the US$500 to US$600 mark. But premium land in downtown tourism districts is around US$1,600 per square metre.

Housing mortgages

Mortgage finance is now available in Cambodia. Acleda Bank entered the home lending market in January 2007; by March 1 2008 Acleda’s home loan portfolio was worth about $40 million. To get around foreclosure risk, given the corrupt legal system, Acleda keeps the title to the property until the loan is repaid.

ANZ also offers 15-year installment loans, allowing customers to borrow up to 60 percent of the home purchase price at variable interest rates, lending against registered titles.

Foreign-ownership schemes

Foreign individuals cannot buy real estate in Cambodia directly. But land can be held by foreigners on long (renewable) leases and through majority locally-owned companies incorporated in Cambodia. This company structure is the safest for a foreigner wishing to buy land. It is not totally bullet-proof, but in practice it works.

Foreigners typically take two Cambodian nationals as partners in the land-holding company, with the 51 percent share allocated so that the foreigner is the biggest single partner. Other safeguards include
  1. Creating different classes of shares, giving the foreigner more rights;
  2. Minority control documents;
  3. A mortgage on the land, stipulating that the land cannot be transferred without the consent of the foreigner.
Leases up to 99 years are another common acceptable structure—the magnificent Raffles Hotel le Royal in Phnom Penh, for instance, is held on a simple lease.

Nominee structures should be avoided.


Anonymous said...

cambodia didn't have to look far. thailand and vietnam do not allow foreigners to own land outright, why should cambodia? simple as that, otherwise the rich people with money will buy up all of poor cambodia.

however, the new law that will allow foreigners to buy buildings is, i think, is applausible; just not owning the land which belong to the nation of cambodia. yes, long-term leases is also applausible as cambodia is changing a lot since the dark days of the KR era. the way things are in place now is very good news. that said, everything to do with the land of cambodia has to go by the cambodia laws and of course with the khmer's national interest as well. thank you and god bless cambodia.

Anonymous said...

Youns Hanoi have a lot of money,Samdech Sihanouk said,Chinese have a lot of money too,Chinese give to Vietcong,to Vietname,to Khmer rouge,to him(Sandech Sihanouk)too,but he take just for food,house,car...?
Vietcong,Vietnamese will have the right to get all Cambodia land at this time,Samdech Hun Sen from Hanoi know that!
This is Politic!!!!!
Vietnamese have money don't worry,But Vietnamese, Youns need land! If Samdech Hun Sen from Hanoi said O.K!(Allowing foreign ownership property past by law) 80 million Vietnamese now?will buy out our country?
They will get in and buy out for the whole couyntry? If anyone do not believe him,Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ,please go and ask Samdech Akkak Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun Sen from Hanoi,If it not clear enough, go and ask Preah Karuna Preah Bat Samdech Preah Norodom Sihanouk Preahmahaviraksat from Hanoi now he stay in Bejing,China!
This is one of a statement of Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ said,if anyone want to see him go to
And you will see his flag,the United People flag,Sangkhum Khmer Niyum flag,Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ flag!

(Youn and Chinese have a lot of money will give to Samdech Hun sen don't worry, but he need land?)
Now Chinese give more and more money to our Samdech Hun Sen government to rebuild our nation? Did any body see that?
Like before Chinese give the money to the Khmer Rouge and Chinese give the money to Samdech Sihanouk too before and now Chinese still taking care our King Samdech Sihanouk, and now give more and more money to Samdech Hun Sen?
BEFORE AND NOW is still the SAME?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Democracy?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Republic?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Communist?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Kings?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Americ?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Chinese?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Vietnamese?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Vietcong?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum French?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Siem?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Thailand?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Pol Pot?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Sandech Hun Sen?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Sam Raisy?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Betrayed Khmer Nation?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum FUNCINPEC?
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum ....????
Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Khmer Love Chinese? or Sangkhum Khmer Niyum Khmer Love Khmer?
out of many Sangkhum Khmer Niyum,one Sangkhum Khmer Niyum.
(out of many,one)This is the meaning of the Sangkhum Khmer Niyum=the United People/Khmer/Cambodia/Kampuchea/Comboge.

Anonymous said...


Yet another scheme from the ruling party to boast the real estate prices once again.

Anonymous said...

of course, that's why this controversial issue of allowing foreigners to buy land outright is still debatable by ALL lawmakers in cambodia. we, khmer people, have to look out for our sovereignty and national interest as well. that's why we have to talk about it, study it and implement the real estate law for our country so khmer people shouldn't have to worry about losing lands to foreigners like the vietnamese, thai, etc... everyone has to obey our cambodian law, like it or not, it is cambodia! if god made us this way, please get used to it!! god bless cambodia.

Anonymous said...

Politic! Politic! Politic!
If our Khmer People do not do politic ,Vietcong will do for you ,Khmer?
Now we do not see Vietcong like before,We only see CPP! Samdech Hun Sen is from where Hanoi? Samdech is Khmer! not Vietcong!This is we see today!
CPP from Were? Vietcong help Khmer Rouge,help CPP for free?
Nothing for free!
We have to pay for it!
We have to work for it!
We have to sacrifice for it!
we have to died for it!
This is one of our Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ said for Remind Khmers/Cambodia/Comboge/Kampuchea and the United People (new name for Khmer).If anyone want to see our Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ flag/the Sangkhum Khmer Niyum flag/The United People flag ,go to

Anonymous said...

it's good to think like this, so it will make the vietcong think twice about wanted to colonize or steal from cambodia. nothing wrongs with that that of thinking. it's call patriotic and nationalistic views, however, must be realistic in our thinking as well. thank you and god bless.

Anonymous said...

We accept all the foreigners across the globe to own properties in Cambodia but please not our two neighbors especially hyenas vietnam.
vietnam is using all kind of DIRTY LEGAL TACTICS in KHMER government and in Nation Assembly to turn King dom of Cambodia into KAMPUCHEA KROM.
vietnam can't own a piece of land or a piece of real estates unless they return KAMPUCHEA KROM to the KING DOM of Cambodia and stop humiliate Khmer Kampuchea Krom who the original owner from their ancestors.
God bless Cambodia

Anonymous said...

We will not get what We want for others do for US, We must do for what We want.Please do not ask Samdech Hun Sen, or Vietnamese do these ,do that for us,no way, they do what they Want! not do what you,Khmer want!
Do not tell Samdech Hun sen how to spend Khmer money! Samdech already know how to ,don't worry! he will not listen to you! He maybe listen to Hanoi much better than you, Khmer!because he from Hanoi that Why,but you(Khmer) Which he helped from the Khmer Rouge,If Hun Sen no ask Vietcong for help We,Khmer all will be died by the Khmer rouge.

No Seven January 1979 ,No Khmer!
Vietnamese is our Second mother Samdech Hun sen said that ,Did anybody forget? No too Fast!
That Why do not hope Samdech or Vietnamese do for you(Khmer).
You should do for yourself instead?
If you not believe in our Samdech Jayavarmen VII Oeurn Sarath from Americ, go and ask Samdech Akkak Moha Sena Padei Techo Hun sen from Hanoi!

Anonymous said...

Who ever have the money and want to make more money! Shake a leg, go and get some Cambodia land, Khmer land and than sell for profit to Vietnamese , Vietnamese have a lot of money! 80 million Vietnam/ 80 million Siem one from the west and one from the East! will buy out!
Politic ! Politic! Politic!
Now Khmer do not want Politic!
Siem and Vietcong will do for US!
United We Stand!

Anonymous said...

What difference does it makes, foreigners or Ah Pleu-oversea? They all want to live on Khmer's back.

Anonymous said...

To 7:25AM

You mother fucker know too much! At least Ah Pleu-oversea have buying and spending power to create job in Cambodia!

As far as I am concerned what happen to Cambodian real estate market is just part of economic cycle and in any economic cycle everything must hit the bottom before it can go back up! If AH HUN SEN government keep on interfering with economic cycle with his stupid real estate law and Cambodian real estate market will never recover and only prolong the suffering!

It would be better off for stupid Cambodian government to use the fucken law especially international to protect Cambodian sovereignty!

Now go do the right stupid mother fucker!

Anonymous said...

I will not have land or apartment to live for my whole life forever. you know my salary is about $1000 per month.

Anonymous said...

12:13PM !You have that much money and you complain ?.I am a capitain in the Army and my salary is $54.00/month.

Anonymous said...

This is old news.

This has been refuted countless of times by the gvt.

KI dont put out stale news as breaking news.

Anonymous said...

In most developped countries, all their government have tried to stop housing price to go up so that their young generation can afford to buy their own house. But it is so rediculous for Cambodian government which has ran the country in opposit by paying their own public servant slavery salary and then wanted their house price to go up. It is nothing more than to kill their own citizen or send them to foreign countries to be slaves for overseas. Areak Prey

Anonymous said...

Laws allowing foreigners to own properties such as buildings and apartments are O.K. But laws allowing foreign ownership of Cambodian lands and territories should be prohibited.

Anonymous said...

Khmer people have lost our dignity and souls. We have Yuon puppets, Western puppets, American puppets, Chen puppets very few Khmers who love Khmers. Our men become lady boys to foreigner sex tourists. Our women prostitutes. MSMs, lady boys, and prostitutes for Westerners, some of them working in NGOs and human rights organizations....they're the same...just like the street whores because are working for the foreigner and not for Khmer. They want to be praised by the foreigner but not praised by their own people. All traitors. They will sell their land, their bodies, their minds, and their souls to the foreigners. That's how Khmer become kmourch (ghosts).

Anonymous said...

Too many Ah Khmer srok Khmer are ashamed of being Khmer. They can't get along with each other. They invite foreigners to come and screw their women, their children, and their heads. You people are pathetic. You can't stand your own people. You can't stand your leader. You want foreigners East and West to come in and buy your land and screw your women and children so you can make money and run overseas.

Lok Khmer Overseas (who is true Khmer patriot)

Anonymous said...

1:19 PM

You're pretending to be a fictitious captain. If you're a real captain in Cambodia and with your English proficiency like the one you wrote (above), you'll be ahead , of course, most your colleagues.

Please be honest. We're are much better when we sense others lie like the prime minister.

Anonymous said...

10:23 PM

As long as everyone's making profit, we say: "Welcome to Cambodia."

Anonymous said...

10:23PM, is your mother a hooker???

May you and your parents hit by
lighning if your mind is to sale out our nation!

Anonymous said...

What the fuck Ah Kwack Hun Xen do your mother fucker PHD know if the fucking Viet come to live in the buiding by million can you still kick then off oe even demand tax from them? You mother fucker can use some brain or you need lightning to strike you just like ah Tayhoung Hok Landy????

Anonymous said...

yes, cambodia welcome all others, especially, american, the EU, japan, korea, etc..., just not youn and siem. of course, khmer hated youn and siem for what they did to cambodia. don't you know that they were historical enemies of khmer nationa and people. if you ask khmer people, they will tell you that youn and siem are not to be trusted and loved by khmer. most if not all of their lands were stolen from cambodia in the first place; thus, how could khmer people trust them. chinese people are better than youn and siem people, at least the chinese don't come to steal our land like the thieves youn and siem, just look at history to understand the reason why khmer people don't like them and don't trust them. that said, i'm sure cambodia would welcome the american, especially the true american, the european, australian, canadian, japanese, korean, chinese, etc... but never youn and siem thieves! thank you and god bless cambodia.

Anonymous said...

I am happy to read all your commends, for me, I’ve got some new ideas which I found from a lot of documents of history of Cambodia throughout regimes. I quoted 6 points from those documents to add as commends here;

1. Who’ve live in Phnom Penh and other provincial town nowadays? The answer is Vietnamese, why they are there? Who are owner of the houses in Phnom Penh and other town(Khmer),Where are they now?(died), who killed them in order to dispute over Khmer houses, to get good jobs, to make better and high education for their children, and to get into leading position in the country, like Loa today.

2. When Khmer were killed? Very early period of Khmer Rouge won, this meant that all KR leaders were not coming to the position. The process of killing is that Khmer people were cheated to go by trucks to welcome Samdach Orv (King, Sihanouk) returning to Cambodia, or go to study at this and that places, and then they were fired crowdedly. Those were killed, people in the capital and provincial town during a very short period of 19 to 23 April 1975.

3. 1979 coming, the Khmer people were replaced by Vietnamese. Those Vietnamese have been living in Cambodia for long time, some of them came to Cambodia during Sangkom Reas Niyoum, some of them came during Lorn Norl regime, they learnt and spoke Khmer very well. 1975 those Vietnamese were sent back to Vietnam by testing who can speak Vietnamese were allowed to go. 1979 while returning to Cambodia, those Vietnamese were allowed to inter Cambodia for whose can speak Khmer by shifting different places of living from capital to province and province to capital. Khmer people knew nothing about this and thought that those who are living in the capital and town are Khmer, but actually those are Vietnamese. It is a reason why people were not allowed to go into Phnom Penh because only Vietnamese were allowed to go in first.

4. In 1975, plan of killing government official and soldiers who live in the capital and town to get their houses until 1979, the next plan is to kill Khmer at rural because at capital are almost Vietnamese. That’s why there was a plan of K5 that all soldiers at the rural were killed.

5. Early 1979, a lot of Khmer people were killed as well, day time, Vietnam acted as good actors, but night time Vietnam acted as killers to kill Khmer more and more in order to eliminate Khmer from the nation. Phnom Penh is just a nest of birds when they grew up, they will fly different places. Vietnam is the same, Phnom Penh is a very central place of their living, Chhbar Ampoav, Oreusey, Olumpic, Neak Loeung, and Chroy Chang Va, all are Vietnamese. They will go to other province while they can speak Khmer. Every Khmer people can see and consider if you really love Khmer.

6. All killings above accused “Ang Kar”, where Ang Kar were from? Unfortunately, the history can not be hidden, South Vietnam were same Cambodia situation, North Vietnam did their politic the same Khmer politic, government officials and soldiers were collected but they were not killed, only jailed. The question was made, Ang Kar in Khmer and in North Vietnam were the same, who learnt from who? Or both Ang Kar was in one. Khmer People can think of the Khmer Rouge Regime, how can KR leader kill Khmer people? because a period of killing, those KR leaders were not coming to the position, so how can they do to kill Khmer? Thus, all KR leaders said “they didn’t know the killing was true”. Actually, Ang Kar from Vietnam were the killers.

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