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Kampot to Get New Port

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:
The sun sets off of Kampot's coast. The end of low season means residents and travellers can begin looking forward to sunnier skies and calmer seas. KT/Jack Laurenson

Construction of a seaport in Kampot is set to begin this year two years after being approved thanks to an $18 million loan from the Asia Development Bank (ADB), according to officials.
Kampot tourism department Soy Sinol, told Khmer Times yesterday that construction plans and the study of the port have been completed, but the technical aspects remained unfinished, with construction set to be completed by 2019.
According to an ADB report on tourism in the greater Mekong, the pier is expected to service 360,000 international and domestic tourists when it opens in 2018 and 442,000 by 2022.
The report says the port will take up 4 hectares about 10 kilometres southeast of Kampot town in Tek Chhou district’s Chhum Kreal commune.
Officials hope the port will open up new multimodal transport options for moving passengers and light freight between Phu Quoc Island, Vietnam, as well as Thailand’s southern islands and Cambodia’s coastal zone.
Mr. Sinol said the new tourism seaport will not only serve  Kampot province, but will also run services to neighboring provinces including Preah Sihanouk, Koh Kong, and Kep.
“We are not only developing the tourism seaport, but we are trying our best to create attractive tourism products, and promoting our tourism product to the world,” Mr. Sinol said, adding that Kampot has many tourist attractions such as Borkor Mountain as well as architecture left over from the French colonial era.
Ho Vandy, advisor to the Cambodia Chamber of Commerce and President of World Express Tour and Travel, welcomed the construction, saying the port will help promote Cambodia’s coastal area.  
“It will be good if it is built by a joint venture between government and private investment because there is an image for the country, and encouragement for local investors to invest in what we are lacking and motivating investors to fund long term projects is good if it attracts more tourists to the area or surrounding places and connecting destinations,” Mr. Vandy said.
Asked whether the development on Phu Quoc Island, which already has an airport and a port will impact the ferry terminal in Kampot, Mr.Sinol said that the port must meet international competition, but each country has its own unique tourism products.
Mr. Sinol said the increasing number of visitors to Kampot is expected to create more local jobs.

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