Phnom Penh-Preah Sihanouk Expressway Off to Safe Start

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The newly opened Phnom Penh-Preah Sihanouk Expressway, which was opened to free public use on October 1st 2022, saw no major incidents on its opening weekend. 

Phnom Penh-Preah Sihanouk Expressway Off to Safe Start
Photo Credit: Xinhua

October 2022 – Free Trial run of Expressway

The Chinese-funded expressway was invested in by the China Road and Bridge Corporation, with a reported amount of USD $2 billion. They oversaw the construction of the total length of 187km which connects the capital Phnom Penh and Preah Sihanouk.

The Cambodian government also spent $150 million to address the impacts prior to construction starting.

More than 80,000 vehicles travelled on the nation’s first-ever expressway in the first week of its trial operation (between October 1-7) reported the Cambodian PPSHV Expressway Company showed. “On average, the daily traffic volume was about 11,460.”

The project took three years to complete and in its trial run, will be free to users for the duration of October 2022. Cambodia’s Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) Secretary of State Yit Bunna said  “We urge all drivers to comply with the speed limits for your own safety and the safety of the others. We wish all passengers safe travel on this expressway.”

There are two lanes for traffic in each direction between the two key economic hubs, in addition, there is an emergency lane on each side paved with asphalt concrete.

With the new road, vehicles should be able to reach their destination in about two hours on, instead of five hours on National Road 4.

The Chinese company has a 50-year concession agreement and they will maintain the road, and return it to the govrnment in good order. According to government estimates, the expressway will be profitable from its 11th year of operation by collecting tolls for road usage. Expressway users will be charged $12 for a one-way trip on the expressway in its first year of operation.

In addition, VAT of 10 per cent must be paid to the government.

Phnom Penh-Preah Sihanouk Expressway toll
Photo Credit: Xinhua

Who can use the Phnom Penh-Preah Sihanouk Expressway?

According to the MPWT, the expressway can only be used by:

  • Motorcycles that have a power of 500cc or more.
  • Cars that can drive at a speed of 70kph or more.

Speed Restrictions

The minimum speed to use the toll road is 60kph and the maximum speed limit:

  • 120kph for regular family cars
  • 100kph for heavy vehicles without trailers and motorcycles
  • 80kph for trucks and cars with trailers.

At the end of September 2022, it was also announced that Sun Chanthol, Minister of Public Works and Transport, had been appointed as Chairman of the Inter-Ministerial Commission to review and speed up the implementation of the expressway infrastructure project connecting Phnom Penh to Bavet city.

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