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$500 million Ecotourism complex ‘needs clear plan’

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:
The potential $500 million ecotourism and entertainment complex project in Kampong Speu. Supplied

Kampong Speu provincial governor said that the massive potential $500 million ecotourism and entertainment complex project in Kampong Speu must have a concrete and clear master plan for its land use in order to seek approval from the government.

The enormous project is an investment by a multinational joint venture from three countries including China, Switzerland and Singapore under the name JOE GRAND ECOINVESTMENT Co. LTD. It was announced by the Kampong Speu provincial administration during a meeting on May 8 last year.

It is more than a year now after the Kampong Speu provincial administration opened discussions on this project.

This massive entertainment project will include entertainment centres, water parks, agricultural tourism park, playgrounds, a zoo, resorts and hotels, sitting on 205 hectares of land located in Samrong Tong district in the province.

Kampong Speu’s governor Vei Samnang told Khmer Times that about 90 percent of the documents, plan and procedures have been reviewed and evaluated. “We will speed up the process this month, and send the investment proposal to the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) for approval.” He added.

“We have no idea when this project will start, but it won’t begin until the government approves it. The company now is speeding up its procedures and documents on the use of land and the master plan,” Samnang added.

When asked why plans for this project have moved so slowly, Samnang responded that there are no barriers on the government side, but the company as needs more time to prepare the procedures to apply to the CDC and the COVID-19 pandemic has caused them issues and delays.

Samnang added that the company will invest $500 million on this the massive project and, in the initial phase, the company will spend $200 million to develop more than 100 hectares of land, which will be completed at the same time as the Phnom Penh-Cambodia expressway Sihanoukville, at the end of 2022.

“We will push this company and pull out all the barriers. However, the delay is because of the company’s procedures on some documents as well as the outbreak of COVID-19,” Samnang added.

He said it will the biggest multi-purpose entertainment project in Asia. It will be able to accommodate 5,000 tourists per day, and needs more employees to help in the service sector. “It will also create jobs and boost the living standards of the people living in the areas in and around Kampong Speu province,” he added.

“This project when it begins will be huge. It will bring massive economic activity with rewards that will end up in people’s pockets,” he added. “Therefore, it will reduce poverty.”

Kampong Speu provincial governor is optimistic that the province will be an attraction for both national and international tourists when it officially opens. At the same time, provincial authorities are also promoting the development of other important local tourist areas.

Nowadays, Kampong Speu has many ecotourism destinations including Wat Veang Chas (Udong City), Kirirom National Park and Chambok Waterfall.

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