Kep (កែប) also romanized as Kaeb (Khmer: កែប, literally: “Saddle of the Horse”) formally known as Kep Province (ខេត្តកែប) is the smallest province (khaet) of Cambodia covering 336 km2 (130 sq mi), with a population of 40,280. It is one of the newest Cambodian provinces, together with Pailin and Sihanoukville, created by Royal Decree on 22 December 2008, which separated Kep municipality from the province of Kampot, as well as adjusting several provincial borders. The provincial capital is Kep District and the province contains the Kep National Park.
The territory of Kep is entirely surrounded by Kampot Province except for the 16 km of sea coast on the southern side fronting the Gulf of Thailand and the Vietnamese island of Phu Quoc. The western limit is 20 km (12,45 miles) from the town of Kampot. The eastern limit is some 20 km from the Vietnamese border.
Kep City is a municipality in Cambodia with the status of a province. Kep is just a few kilometres from the border with Vietnam located and used to be Cambodia's most popular beach town but has fallen on hard times in recent years (especially due to the Khmer Rouge). Many of Kep's, mostly French villas are abandoned, but some of the town's former splendour is still apparent. Kep appears to be experiencing something of a renaissance, with several mid-range and luxury guesthouses and bungalows recently opened or still under construction. The seafood is cheap, plentiful and delicious - particularly the quite famous crabs. Kep is also home to an extensive national park covering some mountains with deep green jungle.
The overall aim was to identify and manage environmental and social issues related to the construction and operation of the proposed salt farm. The farm, located in the coastal zone of Kampot, will produce high quality food-grade salt for export.
The ecologically valuable mangrove areas adjacent to the salt farm will be protected and will have the opportunity to redevelop in a full mangrove ecosystem, serving as a nursery for marine aquatic life and as coastal protection.
The project involves the immediate development of 120 ha of salt farm and related facilities, with scope for future expansion to 400 ha. Investment for the initial development is estimated at US$ 2.9m. In its full capacity the salt farm will add nearly 10% to Cambodia's salt production capabilities, providing valuable export for the future.