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Cambodian Cultural Village set to close next month

Khann Chanvirak / Khmer Times Share:

The Cambodian Cultural Village, a unique attraction in Siem Reap city, has announced that it will close for business next month due to a lack of visitors.

In a statement yesterday, the management said that the attraction is set to close on November 7 due to COVID-19 and the negative effects it has had on tourism.

The company said it has been facing economic and financial difficulties and it can no longer cover the costs of running the village.

However, the management said that they will pay compensation to all employees in accordance with the labour law.

Koy Hary, executive director of the Cultural Village, yesterday told Khmer Times that the company has been losing revenue since 2019 after a decrease in South Korean tourists in the Kingdom. He said that at that time, the Cambodian Cultural Village could receive up to 1,500 tourists per day, of which only about 10 percent were Cambodians.

“Our target guests are foreigners who pay $15 per ticket, while national guests pay $5. But during COVID-19 and the suspension of flights, the village received only around 60 national visitors and around 200 tourists per day despite tickets being half price,” he said.

Hary denied that the closure of the village had anything to do with a recent strike by  employees. He said that out of 310 employees only around 60 went on strike, which was not a big problem for the company.

“The main issue is financial, so the company has closed due to this. The company spends no less than $30,000 a month on staff salaries and  with electricity and other expenses we have to fork out more than $100,000 month,” he said.

The village was established in 2003 and covers an area of 210,000 square meters along National Road 6 in Siem Reap. It features ancient houses, iconic buildings of Khmer history, statues of former Khmer kings, famous artists, poets, as well as performances of ancient art for visitors.

Ngouv Sengkak, director of the Siem Reap provincial department of tourism, expressed regret over the closure of the Cambodia Cultural Village.

“The closure has ruined a tourism service in Siem Reap, because in the past the village has been involved in promoting national arts and culture to tourists, especially foreigners,” he said.

During the three-day Pchum Ben festival from September 16 to 18, Siem Reap province received a total of 122,370 tourists, including 1,370 foreign tourists.

About 62,000 tourists visited Angkor and another 59,000 visited resorts and communities in Siem Reap.

 

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