4th Cambodia-China Friendship Bridge almost completed

April 3rd, 2014 , ECNS

The work of fourth Cambodia-China Friendship Bridge has almost been completed after a 16-month construction, a contractor said Thursday.

He Luesa, head of Shanghai Construction (Group) General Company’ s construction team, said the construction of a 855 meters by 13.5 meters Takhmao Bridge across Tonle Bassac River will be completed in late July this year. …

ECNS News Staff

At-large official given four years in prison

February 26th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Phnom Penh Municipal Court yesterday convicted and sentenced in absentia a senior official at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport for directing money from employees’ salaries to his own pocket.

Seng Setha, 52, general director of the ministry’s administration and human resources department, was sentenced to four years’ prison and fined $1,250, Judge Sem Sakola said. …

Buth Reaksmey Kongkea

Life as Living Nightmare Along National Route 6a

January 31st, 2014 , The Cambodia Daily

Two years after Prime Minister Hun Sen broke ground on a Chinese-funded project to widen National Road 6a in order to expand its capacity as a major trade and tourism thoroughfare, life for the tens of thousands of families living along the 50-km stretch of road has become a living nightmare.

Heavy trucks carrying earth and machinery have cut up the sandy red dirt into a billowing fog that reduces visibility on the road to a few meters, nearly obscuring the houses and storefronts along the roadside.

The cloud of blinding, choking dust hangs with few reprieves over the entire journey from Phnom Penh through Kandal to Kompong Cham province.

The project to expand National Road 6a from a 7-meter-wide road to a 26-meter-wide highway began in early 2012, with Chinese company Shanghai Construction Group contracted on the back of $70.25 million in loans from China. …

In her small shop set back on the edge of the road’s new margin in Mok Kampoul district’s Russei Chroy commune in Kandal province, 48-year-old Ty Srey, a mother of five, said the only thing she knows about the project is the effect it is having on the community. …

“Nobody has come to tell us when the construction will end, not the government and not the company,” she said, referring to one of the numerous companies subcontracted by Shanghai Construction to carry out the project.

“But our children are all ill because of lung problems and skin diseases. It is difficult to breathe and makes them tired, and these symptoms only occurred after the road construction began,” she said, adding that she visits the health center several times per month and spends between 50,000 and 70,000 riel each time (about $12.50 and $17.50). …

Workers at the few points along National Road 6a where construction was taking place on Tuesday, said that obstacles had slowed down their work.

“There are a lot of problems,” said one construction worker with Ly Chhuong Construction Company, which is in charge of building 18 km of the new road in Russei Keo district. …

Hul Reaksmey and Simon Henderson

Cambodia has 2.36 million registered automobiles, motorcycles

December 2nd, 2013 , Global Times

Cambodia has currently had 2.36 million registered automobiles and motorcycles, according to the figures of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport on Friday.

The country has 377,660 cars, buses, and trucks, and 1.98 million motorcycles, said the figures.

Vehicles are mostly purchased from Japan, Thailand, Vietnam, China, South Korea, the United States, and Britain. Japan-branded vehicles are the most popular ones here. …

Global Times News Staff

Project to fix capital’s drains kicks into gear

September 3rd, 2013 , The Phnom Penh Post

The third phase of a project designed to revamp Phnom Penh’s drainage system, currently inundated by seasonal rains, began yesterday.

Four areas of the city spanning a total of 369,445 metres will be witness to the next stage of the project’s implementation, part of an ongoing $350 million drainage system project spearheaded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). …

Sen David

Cambodian Parliament Ratifies ASEAN-China Maritime Transport Agreement

May 10th, 2013 , Xinhuanet News

The National Assembly of Cambodia on Friday ratified the agreement on maritime transport between the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and China, saying the agreement is essential to develop trade and economic ties between ASEAN and China. …

“The agreement aims to facilitate and foster cooperation in passenger and cargo transport by sea among the signatories,” Nin Saphon, Chairwoman of the National Assembly’s Commission on Public Work, Industry, Mines, Energy, Commerce, and Land Management, said during the session. …

Xinhua News Staff

Slight rise in truck numbers

March 25th, 2013 , The Phnom Penh Post

The total number of new trucks registered last year increased slightly, but industry insiders said that even though more trucks are needed to boost the Kingdom’s trading volume, the country’s export capacity is relatively unaffected because of trucks bought in previous years.

The number of big trucks registered reached 12,715 units last year, compared with 12,156 units in 2011, while the number of small trucks registered declined to 6,921 units from 7,314 in 2011, according to figures from the transportation department under the Ministry of Public Works and Transport. …

Sarah Thust and Hor Kimsay

Vehicle registration grows despite flaws in the system

March 12th, 2013 , The Phnom Penh Post

An absence of public transport, improved roads and the economic development of Cambodia’s rural areas was reflected in an increase in vehicle registrations by 7.7 per cent from 2011 to 2012, official data shows. However, as an insider said yesterday, many cars and motorcycles will not be registered because administrative infrastructure is missing.

Data from the Department of Transport (DOT) at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport shows a increase in registration numbers last year compared to 2011, with 271,155 entries. …

Sarah Thust

Insight: Cambodia’s $11 billion mystery

February 14th, 2013 , Reuters

The remote district of Rovieng was once a battleground between Cambodian government troops and Pol Pot’s genocidal Khmer Rouge. Unexploded bombs still lurk in its fields and forests.

So does something more desirable – iron ore – and supposedly in such huge quantities two Chinese companies have an $11-billion plan to extract it.

Their proposal – a steel plant and seaport linked by a 404-km (251-mile) railroad – has alarmed environmentalists, mystified mining and transport experts, and bolstered Cambodia’s reputation as an agent for Chinese expansionism in a region where the United States is increasingly competing for influence. …

Speaking at the signing ceremony, Cambodia Iron and Steel general manager Zhang Chuan You said work would begin in July and be finished within four years. But Cambodia’s transport minister Tram Iv Tek, who also attended the ceremony, professed to know almost nothing about it. The conspicuous absence of authoritarian Prime Minister Hun Sen also left many wondering whether China’s mystery train was going anywhere. …

Andrew R.C. Marshall and Prak Chan Thul

Government Asks for Asian Development Bank’s Help on Railway

January 29th, 2013 , The Cambodia Daily

The government yesterday asked the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to continue to help Cambodia’s troubled railway rehabilitation project, which is in desperate need of more funding in order to complete the network’s northern line.

Foreign Affairs Minister Hor Namhong met with the ADB’s recently appointed country director, Eric Sidgwick, in Phnom Penh. Following the meeting, Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Koy Kuong told reporters that Mr. Namhong had brought up the rail project, to which the ADB has already contributed $84 million, making it the project’s largest financer. …

Eang Mengleng and Simon Lewis, P.17

Direct Bangkok-Phnom Penh Bus Route Officially Opens Commences

June 14th, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

Starting today, 22 Cambodian buses and a truck will be allowed to transport passengers and goods directly between Phnom Penh and Bangkok, an official said yesterday.

“We will officially open the Poipet International Checkpoint [to buses and trucks] on the Thai border,” said Suon Vanhong, deputy director of transport at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport.

Until today, passengers and goods have had to change vehicles at the border before continuing on to their destination in Thai trucks and buses.

Mr. Vanhong said that 22 Cambodian buses and one truck had received licenses to travel directly between Phnom Penh and Bangkok. Bus companies that received licenses for their vehicles include Capitol Tours, Rith Mony Bus Company, Mekong Express and Phnom Penh Sorya Transport Co. Ltd., Mr. Vanhong said. …

Phok Dorn, P. 22

Buses to Run Direct to and from Bangkok

May 30th, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

Starting next month, 80 Cambodian and Thai buses and trucks will be allowed to transport goods and passengers directly between Bangkok and Phnom Penh for the first time, an official said yesterday.

Suon Vanhong, deputy director of transport at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, said 30 Cambodian buses and 10 trucks would be able to cross the Poipet international checkpoint starting June 14.

Another 10 buses and 30 trucks from Thailand would be allowed through the checkpoint as well, he added. Until now, passengers and goods have had to change vehicles at the border.“This will be the first [direct] land transport from Phnom Penh to Bangkok city,” he said, adding that buses would not be running through the Koh Kong border for the time being. …

Phok Dorn, P. 22

Gov’t Requires Bus Companies To Submit Driver Information

May 29th, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

In response to a spate of deadly bus crashes in the country, the government has ordered all bus companies to provide authorities with detailed histories of all their drivers, an official at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport said yesterday.

Peou Maly, deputy director-general at the ministry’s transportation department, said the government had contacted all bus companies on May 14 and asked them to send proof of their drivers’ licenses, as well as a written account of previous accidents or complaints made against them.

“We are asking that all bus companies send us their drivers’ backgrounds and licenses because it will be easier to control the situation and see whether or not they have a history of accidents,” he said, adding that bus drivers have a history of giving false information to employers regarding their driving history. …

Phok Dorn, P. 23

Construction Woes Plague Railway Project

May 23rd, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

The rehabilitation of Cambodia’s dilapidated railway network has encountered delays due to poor construction work and inappropriate surveying methods when making plans to lay down tracks, according to a draft review of the ongoing $140 million project conducted by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the government earlier this month.

A draft memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the Ministry of Public Works and Transport and the ADB obtained yesterday states that poor construction work on between 6 and 12 km of the southern railway line had contributed to delays on the line of up to 335 days.

It also states that initial surveying on where to lay down track on the 385-km northern line did not match where construction work would actually take place, meaning that further resettlements of families living in Poipet City could occur in the future.

The information in the MOU appears to shed light on why Australian firm Toll Holdings, which has a 30-year concession to operate the railway network with the Cambodian conglomerate Royal Group, decided in March to suspend operations until the southern line has been completed. …

Philip Heijmans, P.1

Study to determine cost to finish railway

May 3rd, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

With funds almost exhausted on the $140 million rehabilitation of Cambodia’s railway network, the government and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) have decided to conduct a study to determine how much more money is needed to complete the project, a government consultant said yesterday.

Paul Power, a consultant on the project hired by the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, said that the study would determine how much money is needed to build approximately 300km of track remaining along the northern line between Phnom Penh and Poipet…

Philip Heijmans

Bus Companies Warned of Three Strikes Rule

March 22nd, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

Bus companies that are involved in crashes or break the law will receive two warnings before being summarily closed down by the government, a senior official said yesterday.

Responding to a recent spate of serious tour bus crashes, Peou Maly, deputy director-general at the transport department in the Ministry of Pubic Works and Transport, said the department will issue the warnings to companies if they break the traffic law, are caught speeding or cause injuries to passengers. …

Khuon Narim and Simon Lewis, P. 15

Rail Project In Need of More Funds

March 21st, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

The rehabilitation of Cambodia’s dilapidated railway network is nearly six months behind schedule, and with more than a year’s worth of work to do, the project is running out of money, a consultant for the Ministry of Public Works and Transport said yesterday.

Paul Power, a consultant on the railway project hired by the ministry, said yesterday that the 600-km rehabilitation project…would likely cost between $50 million and $100 million to finish, on top of the $140 million already sunk into the project by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the Australian Agency for International Development.

“We are collectively working to see just how much it will cost and where it will come from,” he said, adding that the government and the project’s backers had underestimated how much of the original tracks could be salvaged. …

Philip Heijmans and Khy Sovuthy, P.1

Gov’t Reveals Chinese, Korean Railway Plans

March 20th, 2012 , The Cambodia Daily

The Chinese and South Korean governments have been granted permission to build 565 km of new railroad in Cambodia and have already conducted feasibility studies, according to a government report released yesterday.

In its annual report, the Ministry of Public Works and Transport said that plans were in store to build 450 km of railroad from Preah Vihear province in the north to Kampot province in the south.

China Railway—a state-owned company under the Chinese Ministry of Railways—has conducted a feasibility study for the project, the report says.

The line would pass through Kompong Thom, Kompong Chhnang and Kompong Speu provinces, according to the report, which added that another Chinese company, CRSDI, is involved in studies for more railway-related work, including a station to be built in Kompong Chhnang City, the report says. …

Eang Mengleng and Simon Lewis, P.17

Cambodia, South Korea Ties

September 5th, 2011 , The Southeast Asia Weekly

Cambodia-Korea Alumni Association (CAMKAA) in cooperation with The Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) Cambodia Office launched the 3rd Seminar on the “Exchange Experiences of the Cambodia Korea Alumni Association” on August 26th to observe the mutual cooperation between Cambodia-South Korea.

Mr. Seng Setha, President of CAMKAA, and Director of Personnel and HR Department, Ministry of Public Works and Transport, said that, “The main purpose of this seminar is to share and exchange experiences, know-how and expertise among members from one field to another field and from one ministry to another ministry who received a variety of technical training programs in the Republic of Korea in both long and short terms as organized by the Korea International Cooperation Agency. This was the third time that the association had organized the seminar.” At the workshop, both sides highlighted work of Road Investment Plan 2008-2023, SMEs in Cambodia, Case Studies on LYLY Food Industry, Integrated Rural Development Project, and Public Audit Management… Continue »

(Chhorng Long Heng, p 4).