KAMPOT, Cambodia, 15 March 2019: Asian Development Bank is funding a massive port project in Kampot, an estuary town on Cambodia’s coast close to Phu Quoc island in Vietnam.
Due to be completed by the end of this year ADB funded the project to the tune of USD10 million.
Construction got underway in mid-2017 at a site 6 km southeast of Kampot town in Teck Chhou district’s Chum Kreal commune.
Other ADB funding of around USD8 million will be used to improve tourism infrastructure in Kep and Koh Kong provinces.
Billed as a key project to boost tourism, the port at Kampot will benefit the local economy by providing job opportunities and creating support services to handle up to 1.5 million passengers annually.
Covering a site of four hectares, the six-metre deep port has been designed to attract international tourists setting it apart from the commercial port at Sihanoukville.
At the time of the ground breaking Khmer Times quoted ADB Cambodia head, Eric Sidgwick, saying: “The development of this passenger pier will support an increase in tourism in southern coastal areas and help establish a new gateway between southern Cambodia, Vietnam and other destinations in the Gulf of Thailand.”
It will also boost property development with recent news that Japanese investors are keen to build a villa resort to attract Japanese retirees.
Investors from China and France have also shown interest, prompting suggestions that Kampot will ultimately become an attractive option for up-market hotel developers.
Cambodia’s Minister of Tourism, Thong Khon, told Khmer Times during a site visit, earlier this month, that the port would become a key facility to improve cruise tourism to the region.
Once open the port will be the first in the country with dedicated facilities and a terminal for cruise ships.
However, he declined to confirm which company would be assigned to manage the port under a joint public-private venture agreement.
The project is scheduled for completion by the end of the year to coincide with the Sea Festival, which will be held in the province for the second time, the minister noted.
The project funded by ADB and is part of the Greater Mekong Sub-region Tourism Infrastructure for Inclusive Growth Project, he concluded.
In the long run it will bring more tourists to explore Preah Sihanouk, Koh Kong, and Kep provinces, while serving as port stop before sailing to Phu Quoc Island in Vietnam the minister concluded.
(Source Khmer Times with additional reporting)