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Saturday, December 05, 2009

Cambodia opens road building link to Thailand

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen opened Saturday a road building link to the Thai border in northwestern Cambodia.

The 117-kilometer long National Road No. 68, which runs from Kralanh district in Siem Reap province to O' Smach in Udor Meanchey province, will be completed in two years time.

Hun Sen said the construction and restoration of the road which costs 33 million U.S. dollars will be fully financed by the Royal Government of Cambodia to respond to the people's actual needs, in spite of the current global financial and economic crisis.

Thailand signed an agreement with Cambodia in August this year to provide loans amounting to some 41 million U.S. dollars for building this road, but Cambodia canceled it late last month, and instead used its own funding.

Hun Sen said he had identified the area as an economic pole, among Cambodia's other poles, as it is favorable for agriculture and tourism development.

"Thus, after the construction of the National Road No. 68 has been completed, this area will become an important and real economic pole in Cambodia," Hun Sen said.

He added that his government is firmly committed to the restoration and development of all sectors, especially the restoration, maintenance and development of transportation infrastructure which is the prioritized policy of his new fourth-term government beginning from 2008 through 2013.

He said the efforts in building infrastructure apply to Cambodia's slogan that says "wherever there is road there will be hope."

He added that this road network is located on two main corridors that serve both national and international transport purpose from western to eastern part.

The first corridor is the northern sub-corridor of the first southern corridor of the Greater Mekong Sub-region which runs through Laos and heads to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam.

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