Construction of a new international airport in Siem Reap will start after the national election at the end of this month, according to a project representative.
Zou Yuhui, vice president of China’s state-run Yunnan Investment Holdings Ltd., the company in charge of the project, told news agency AKP last week that the main construction work for the project will definitely start this year, later adding that it is most likely to begin after the national polls at the end of this month.
Work to prepare the site – including clearing, compacting and levelling the ground – has already been going on for months, he said.
Mr Yuhui failed to give any more details regarding the project’s timeline.
Sin Chansereyvutha, spokesman at the State Secretary of Civil Aviation, told Khmer Times yesterday that they did not have access to information regarding the project’s development.
“The company is working with provincial authorities, so we are not really being briefed on the latest developments.” Mr Chansereyvutha said “We just learnt that they have been doing preparation work on the site for months.”
The new airport, which is expected to cost close to $1 billion, is being built on a 750-hectare property in Sotr Nikom district on the outskirts of Siem Reap City. The project is expected to be completed in two to three years.
The airport will be built in three phases. The company will invest $500 million for the first and second phases, which will allow medium-sized passenger aircraft like the Boeing 737 and Airbus A320 to land. Another $300 million will be allocated for the third phase.
Last October 2017, the agreement to build the new airport was signed between the Cambodian government and Yunnan Investment Holdings. The agreement gave the Chinese firm the exclusive right to run and manage the airport concession for 55 years under a build-operate-transfer (BOT) scheme.