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Model market on Vietnamese border finally breaks ground

May Kunmakara / Khmer Times Share:
Cambodian and Vietnamese officials during the ground-breaking ceremony for the new border market. Supplied

Construction of a model market on the Cambodia-Vietnam border began yesterday, with officials saying the project will help the countries attain $5 million in bilateral trade in upcoming years.

Officially dubbed “Da Market” for its location in the Da commune in Tbaung Khmum province’s Memot district, the new marketplace will occupy an area of more than 19,500 square metres in Thary Tbaung Khmum Special Economic Zone.

Construction will take 12 months, according to official sources.

The project got underway in 2013, but was postponed multiple times and taken up again in 2016.

In July last year, Cambodian and Vietnamese officials signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to kick-start the project.

Vu Quang Minh, the Vietnamese ambassador to Cambodia, said the aim of the project is to build up trade infrastructure in the border to promote economic and trade exchanges and raise the living standards of locals.

“Both governments have conducted a lot of research to make this project a reality,” he said.

“With its great location, Da Market will boost trading between our nations.”

Mr Quang Minh said it is a place to buy, sell, exchange and transit goods produced in Kratie, Kampong Cham, Rattanakiri and Mundulkiri to meet demand in Vietnam.

At the same time, he explained, it is a convenient place for people living on the border to do their shopping and sell goods.

“It will improve the lives of residents in Vietnam’s Tay Ninh province and Tbaung Khmum in Cambodia.”

“Today is not only a happy day for the people of Tay Ninh and Tbaung Khmum,” he said. “It is also a happy day for the residents living along the border.

“We hope the market will be a breakthrough for the commercial development of the whole area, and will be a model for enhancing the connection between the two economies.”

According to the data from the Vietnamese Embassy in Phnom Penh, bilateral trade reached $3.7 billion last year, an increase of 28 percent year-on-year. Cambodian goods shipped to Vietnam accounted for $1 billion, 37.7 percent more than in 2016.

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