Public banned form walking by Independence Monument after GFX protest in Cambodia

Investors gather in front of the GoldFX Investment Co., Ltd building in Phnom Penh to demand their money back after $27million was stolen from the investment fund, May 31, 2021. CamboJA/ Panha Chhorpoan. Sketched by the Pan Pacific Agency.

PHNOM PENH, Aug 16, 2021, Khmer Times. The public was banned from walking in front of Independence Monument yesterday morning after authorities confronted distraught GoldFX Investment Co Ltd (GFX) investors minutes after they arrived there at 8am, Khmer Times reported.

It is believed that the authorities told the unfortunate investors that their gathering went against Coronavirus-related restrictions. The group was disbanded peacefully around 8:20am, according to eyewitnesses.

Investors and their representatives declined to provide a comment for this article.

A nearby shopkeeper said that police were already on site in the morning when the investors originally appeared. He said that it was likely they had caught wind of the gathering before it occurred.

Hours after the group had left the premises, the grounds of Independence Monument remained guarded, with personnel patrolling the grounds via scooters and vehicles to ensure Coronavirus guidelines were being followed.

“Go away, stay away. You not allowed here [sic],” one policeman told a journalist around 10am before tracking his movements all the way to Sisowath Quay.

The loss of $27 million by GFX investors has become a seminal moment for the fledgling derivatives market, with insiders saying that it will “take years for the market to recover”.

The number of lots traded in derivatives in Cambodia dropped by 17.05 percent as of June, according to official figures.

The Prime Minister previously dispatched Duong Dara, secretary of state for the Council of Ministers to help resolve the dispute between investors and the company.

Dara has said that it was likely that victims would appear at some point by the Prime Minister’s residence.

He has encouraged victims not to air their grievances to the press or on social media, saying that it will hurt their chances of reaching an amicable settlement, insiders have said.

GFX is offering up to 30 percent in compensation to victims. The derivatives brokerage has claimed that half of all victims have already accepted the package. One investor refers to that as a “big lie”.

Representatives believe no more than 10 percent of investors have accepted the package. Thumbprints have been collected of more than 700 people who turned down the offer, with more continuing to be collected.

Six investor representatives joined to make a restitution proposal that would see victims receive 30 percent of initial investments back immediately, with 50 percent more due over the next three months.

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