Laos plans new consulate

April 11th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Laos plans to establish consulate general in Siem Reap province to boost bilateral cooperation with Cambodia through tourism and trade, a senior official from Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday.

“Tourism from Laos is increasing annually, so Lao PDR will establish a general consulate based in Siem Reap.” Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesman Koy Koung said. He added that Laos is also planning to expand flights to Cambodia.

The news came after an official meeting between Cambodia’s Foreign Affairs minister and the former Lao ambassador to Cambodia. …

Chan Muyhong

Angkor ready for surge of tourists

April 7th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Siem Reap hotel operators are preparing for a deluge of tourists this Khmer New Year season the likes of which is not often seen, tourism officials say.

Chheuy Chhorn, deputy director of Siem Reap’s tourism department, said after attracting 170,000 visitors to the first annual Angkor Sangkran celebration last year, hotel and business owners are expecting more than 200,000 tourists to attend this year’s event. …

Hor Kimsay

Battambang moves to establish first Pub Street

April 3rd, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

To attract tourism and make Battambang province more appealing as a nightlife destination, provincial authorities are preparing to follow the way of Siem Reap and lay the groundwork for a Pub Street ahead of the Khmer New Year.

The deputy governor of Battambang, Ngon Ratthanak, says the authorities had decided that Battambang’s first Pub Street would be located in Svay Pou commune, on a riverside stretch of Road No.1, and that it’s hoped the move will attract more visitors to the city as well as entice more people to relocate there. …

Siv Meng

Increase in Cambodian tourism leads to growing importance of child safe tourism

March 26th, 2014 , eTurboNews

In 2013, Cambodia welcomed 4.2 million tourists, an increase of 17% from the previous year. This rapid growth of tourist arrivals is expected to continue year on year, raising concerns about how to ensure that local children are only positively impacted by tourism.

Tourism destinations attract vulnerable children and families seeking an income. These children may engage in income earning activity on the street, making them particularly vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. …

eTN Global Travel Industry News Staff

Briq enters the Cambodia market

March 10th, 2014 , Marketing Interactive

Creative agency Briq has expanded to Cambodia, its second office globally after first launching in Singapore four years ago.

Briq International Cambodia will offer marketing and communication solutions – creative, production, digital services, strategic planning and research, content development, public relations, media and activation. …

Marketing Interactive News Staff

Minister calls for construction of plastic recycle plants in Bavet, Sihanoukville

March 6th, 2014 , The Cambodia Herald

Say Sam Al, Minister of Environment, on Thursday called for construction of plastic recycle plants in Bavet and Sihanoukville.

Speaking at the meeting, the minister said that in the last 20 years Ministry of Environment as well as Cambodian government didn’t allow trash recycle in the country to avoid imports of trash from other countries to be recycled in Cambodia. …

Nep Samuth, Tourism Director General, said that Phnom Penh city is producing about 1,200 tons of trash per day.

He said the trash will increase to 2,200 tons a day by 2015.

98 per cents of the Phnom Penh residents use the plastic bags which negatively affect environment and human health. …

The Cambodia Herlad

Cambodia predicts 12 pct growth in tourism this year: minister

February 26th, 2014 , Xinhuanet News

Cambodia is forecast to receive 4.7 million foreign visitors in 2014, an estimated rise of 12 percent from 4.2 million in 2013, Minister of Tourism Thong Khon said Wednesday.

Last year, the country’s tourism generated 2.5 billion U.S. dollars, contributing about 16 percent to the GDP, he said, adding that the sector has created 400,000 direct jobs.

He said Cambodia saw China as a huge market for its tourism. …

Xinhuanet News Staff

PATA Travel Mart set for Phnom Penh, Cambodia

February 25th, 2014 , Breaking Travel News

The Pacific Asia Travel Association will hold the 37th PATA Travel Mart at Diamond Island Convention & Exhibition Centre, Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

The event is being hosted by the ministry of tourism of Cambodia and will take place from September 17th-19th.

PTM 2014 will offer delegates the opportunity to buy and sell Asia Pacific travel products in an emerging destination that has diversified its tourist attractions and attracted double digit increases in arrivals over the last ten years. …

Breaking Travel News Staff

Cambodian airports to double capacity

February 24th, 2014 , Bangkok Post

Expansion plans will double passenger capacity at Phnom Penh and Siem Reap airports in Cambodia, according to a local aviation official.

The project will expand parking areas, terminals and all facilities at the two international airports, Khek Norinda, communications director for Cambodia Airports, said. …

Bangkok Post News Staff

Cambodia on track to attract 8 mln foreign tourists by 2020: PM

February 19th, 2014 , Nzweek

Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen said Tuesday that the country is likely to receive up to 8 million foreign visitors by 2020. …

The premier’s optimistic forecast came after the country greeted some 4.2 million inbound tourists last year, an increase of 17 percent compared to 3.6 million in a year earlier. …

Joseph A. Cambra

New Futuristic Tuk-Tuks Arrive on the Streets of Phnom Penh

February 19th, 2014 , The Cambodia Daily

Most tuk-tuk drivers have to continuously vie with each other to attract tourists’ attention, but Oung Hour gets it without even trying.

As he stands on the sidewalk near the riverside, groups of tourists point at his bright mustard-yellow tuk-tuk, its smooth fiberglass body shaped like a jellybean—a slick, sci-fi-like model that’s a far cry from the traditional wooden kind. …

The rounded tuk-tuks arrived in Phnom Penh in November via Bruno Brunner, a Swiss national who runs a motorcycle rental business.

“The tuk-tuks are modern and fit for 2014,” Mr. Brunner said. “And the passengers love this tuk-tuk.”

The new look is the most recent change for the ubiquitous Phnom Penh tuk-tuk, of which there are now more than 600,000 in the city, according to the Independence Democratic of Informal Economic Association (IDEA), a union that represents tuk-tuk drivers among other members. …

Emily Wilkins and Sek Odom

About 871,000 Cambodians travel abroad in 2013, up 10 pct

February 18th, 2014 , The Cambodia Herald

The number of Cambodia’s outbound travelers increased by 10 percent year-on-year to 871,000 last year, a report of the Ministry of Tourism showed Tuesday.

Ang Kim Eang, president of Cambodia Association of Travel Agents, which represents about 220 tour and travel companies, said most of Cambodian travelers went to ASEAN countries thanks to visa exemption agreements and easiness in traveling by both land and air. …

Xinhuanet News Staff

Alarm over workers to Emirates

February 18th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Cambodian labourers may soon be recruited to construction sites in the United Arab Emirates, where conditions are described as “tragic” by human rights groups.

The Lebanon-based company that would hire the workers under the prospective scheme, Agostine & Raphael Group, is run by Middle Eastern tycoon Kamal Agostine, who also serves as the Cambodian Ministry of Tourism’s official envoy to the Middle East and Gulf Cooperation Council.

On Friday, Agostine met with Minister of Labour Ith Sam Heng in Phnom Penh to hammer out the details of a memorandum of understanding (MoU), which looks likely to be finalised in the near future. …

Friday’s meeting came a day after a report by the Nepalese rights group Pravasi Nepali Coordination Committee said at least 400 Nepalese workers had died on construction sites in Qatar as the UAE’s next-door neighbour prepares for the World Cup in 2022.

Conditions for Asian migrant workers in the region are widely understood to be dire, with local regulations heavily favouring companies’ rights to use cheap, disposable labour over the rights of workers to enjoy an acceptable standard of living. …

Daniel Pye

China fuels Cambodia’s airline growth

February 13th, 2014 , TTR Weekly

The Centre for Asia Pacific Aviation says Cambodia’s aviation market grew briskly for the second consecutive year as national and foreign airlines added routes to China amid a surge in Chinese nationals visiting the country.

The centre reported Cambodia has emerged as one of the fastest growing markets in Southeast Asia, recording 18% passenger growth for the second consecutive year in 2013.

Cambodia’s three commercial airports — Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville– handled 5.1 million passengers in 2013, representing an 18% increase over the 4.3 million passengers handled in 2012, based on figures from Cambodia Airports. …

All five of Cambodia Angkor Air’s other China routes are also currently served with three weekly flights except Guangzhou-Siem Reap, which is served daily according to OAG data. Cambodia Angkor Air also has launched some charter routes to China over the last year, including to Xiamen. …

Total scheduled capacity from Cambodia to China has increased by more than 50% over the last year, according to CAPA and OAG data.

Total one-way capacity between the two countries in the first half of 2014 will fluctuate between about 10,000 and 13,000 weekly one-way seats (the market is highly seasonal).

Cambodia Angkor Air will capture an estimated 19% share of the scheduled Cambodia-China market in April this year, up from about 14% currently and zero just a few months ago.

Wanwisa Ngamsangchaikit

Tourism revenues increase but taxes remain flat

February 13th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Overall revenue from Cambodia’s booming tourism sector reached $2.5 billion last year, according to Tourism Minister Thong Khon.

Khon said in an interview on Tuesday that the figure, which does not reflect the amount the state collected in taxes on the sector, marked a 15 per cent increase compared with the revenue accumulated in 2012. …

Son Chhay, senior lawmaker with the opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party, claimed yesterday – as he consistently has in the past – that while gross revenue from tourism keeps increasing, government coffers aren’t as full as they potentially should be.

“We see that the income put into the state budget is just a small amount,” he said. “We should have earned at least $500 million for the state budget. In general, the report from the Ministry of Economy and Finance shows that income for the state is under $40 million – that’s the problem. …

Chan Muy Hong

Hoteliers Are Warming Up to Phnom Penh

February 5th, 2014 , The Cambodia Daily

Compared to the bustling tourist center of Siem Reap, Phnom Penh has long stood in second place as an investment destination for international hotel operations.

But as infrastructure slowly improves and the number of visitors to the capital continues to grow, international hotel chains are taking a second look at potential opportunities in Phnom Penh. …

While Siem Reap has long been the main tourist destination in Cambodia, the number of foreign visitors to Phnom Penh and other cities in the country has increased by nearly a third between 2012 and 2013, while those visiting to Siem Reap grew by 8.1 percent.

The hotel industry is waking up to Phnom Penh’s increasing popularity among tourists, said Ho Vandy, co-chair of the Government-Private Sector Working Group on Tourism.

“They see the figures from the last 10 years,” Mr. Vandy said, referring to figures from the Ministry of Tourism showing the number of visitors to Cambodia growing from just 700,000 in 2003 to more than 3.5 million in 2012. …

Emily Wilkins

Cambodia attracts some 460,000 Chinese visitors in 2013, up 38 pct

February 4th, 2014 , Shanghai Daily

Cambodia greeted about 460,000 Chinese tourists last year, up 38 percent from 333,900 in a year earlier, according to a report of the Ministry of Tourism on Tuesday.

China is the second largest source of tourists to Cambodia after Vietnam, the report said.

Cambodian Tourism Minister Thong Khon said last week that the steady growth of Chinese tourists to Cambodia was thanks to the country’s attractive tourism destinations, political stability and good security, and direct flight connections between the two countries. …

Shanghai Daily News Staff

Tourism Not Affected by Deadlock

January 30th, 2014 , The Cambodia Daily

International tourist arrivals to Cambodia for 2013 increased 14.1 percent over arrivals in 2012, despite lingering political uncertainty following the July election, according to preliminary annual figures from the Ministry of Tourism.

The number of visitors entering the country last year reached 4.2 million, compared to 3.68 million in 2012. Vietnamese nationals made up the largest number of foreign visitors, followed by Japanese and Korean tourists.

Kong Sopheareak, director of the Ministry of Tourism, said tourism has been largely unaffected by the political deadlock after the election, and visitors remain undeterred by the mass demonstrations held by the opposition CNRP to protest what they say were multiple electoral irregularities that allowed the CPP to steal the vote. …

George Styllis

Cambodia’s aviation sector rapidly growing: report

January 29th, 2014 , The Phnom Penh Post

Capitalising on booming travel from Vietnam and China, the domestic aviation sector has enjoyed 18 per cent passenger growth for the second year running, according to a new report, which describes Cambodia as having one of the fastest-growing markets in Southeast Asia.

The report, by the Australia-based Centre for Aviation, says that Cambodia’s three commercial airports in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville received 5.1 million arrivals in 2013, up from 4.3 million in 2012.

Capacity at Cambodia’s two main airports is being pushed to the limit as passenger traffic at Siem Reap International more than doubled since 2009 to 2.7 million in 2013, while Phnom Penh International received 2.4 million arrivals in 2013, up from 2.1 million in 2012. …

Eddie Morton