No Flood Relief Without Plan, Hun Sen Says

Prime Minister Hun Sen on Friday told the Council of Mini­sters that government agencies must work out projects to repair damage from last year’s flooding in order to lay claim to relief money offered by foreign donors.

Unless donors are convinced the projects are clearly thought out and worthwhile, they won’t hand over the money, council spokesman Penn Thol quoted the premier as saying.

Hun Sen assigned Finance Minister Keat Chhon to convene a meeting between the ministries of health, education, agriculture, rural development, transport and water resources to work out a series of programs.

Also on Friday, the council adopted a draft decree to set up a center to research and preserve biodiversity in the Tonle Sap, Penn Thol said.

The center, which Penn Thol described as “important to reform, develop and restore the environment,” will come under the au­thority of the Mekong River Com­mission.

The council also adopted a sub-decree privatizing the veterinary industry. At present, village vets must be employees of the government, Penn Thol said. The law calls for the Ministry of Agri­culture to offer training to villagers and high school graduates to qualify as professional vets.


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