Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Clean water vital to tourism: Minister

Clean water vital to tourism: Minister

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Journalists visiting the wastewater treatment plant in Sihanoukville on April 25. Hong Menea

Clean water vital to tourism: Minister

The Preah Sihanouk Provincial Administration has begun to generate fee revenue from wastewater treatment plants while governor Kuoch Chamroeun calls on all residents to pay for wastewater treatment services in order to protect the environment.

“We want to maintain a good environment, but we also need our people’s support as well because when they have some understanding about making contributions to care of the environment, they will be willing to pay. That willingness is profitable for all,” he said.

According to Chamroeun, there are two wastewater treatment plants that have been built in the province and the first has the capacity to filter 5,200 cubic metres of wastewater per day while the second has the capacity to filter 7,200 cubic metres of wastewater per day.

The third wastewater treatment plant is under construction and is scheduled to be finished in October. Once completed, it will have the capacity to filter 20,000 cubic metres of wastewater per day.

Chamroeun said that in order to support the operation of the first two wastewater treatment plants, the provincial administration spends about 3 billion riel ($730,800) per year, but fees collected for this purpose amount to only about 400 million riel per year.

Therefore, the provincial administration is conducting a legal study and push the collection of fees from wastewater producers, as well as calling on all citizens to participate in paying the fees.

According to the provincial governor, the main purpose of the government’s expenditures on the wastewater treatment plants is to maintain good environments on the beaches, because without these treatment plants the wastewater will flow directly onto the beaches with unpleasant consequences such as bad smells.

At the same time, he called on the people of Preah Sihanouk to connect their homes and businesses to the sewer system properly, including one pipe for rainwater drainage and one for sewage, so it can be treated.

“Please separate the connection of the sewage network and the rainwater network at your house or construction site as we have two different systems and they cannot be linked together,” he said.

Chamroeun added that if the two networks are connected together, it wastes the filtering capacity and is costly as well.

Minister of Tourism Thong Khon said that the main concern in Preah Sihanouk province is to keep the water and beaches clean and to protect the marine water from pollution.

“If we do not have a clean and beautiful beach, then there will be no tourists visiting the province.

“The government has made great efforts to build large wastewater treatment plants. In the future, there will be one large wastewater treatment plant, but for now we have built three wastewater treatment plants and it’s really important that all wastewater flow through these treatment plants. This is a matter of life and death,” he said.

Ly Rith, CEO of the X-Water Technology Co Ltd, which is responsible for the construction of the wastewater treatment plant in the province, said the plant uses the latest MABR [membrane aerated biofilm reactor] technology from Israel, which costs less than treatments with the old technology.

Rith said the construction of wastewater treatment plants is contributing to reducing the health issues from water resources in addition to protecting the environment and safeguarding tourism.

According to his company’s experts, the three wastewater treatment plants together account for 70 per cent of Sihanoukville’s wastewater, meaning they still need to build additional capacity to handle the total outflow.


  • 12th Cambodia int’l film festival to see return of Hollywood star

    Phnom Penh is set to come alive with the magic of cinema as the highly anticipated 12th Cambodia International Film Festival (CIFF) takes centre stage. Boasting an impressive line-up of 188 films from 23 countries, including captivating shorts, feature films, documentaries and animation, the festival promises an

  • Bareknuckle champion wants Kun Khmer fighter

    Dave Leduc, who is the current openweight Lethwei boxing champion in Myanmar, has announced that he will travel to Cambodia this year to challenge SEA Games gold medallist Prum Samnang any time that is convenient, after their planned match later this month in Slovakia was

  • Struggling Battambang artist dreams of staging full-scale gallery exhibition

    Leav Kimchhoth, a 55-year-old artist from Battambang province, is a familiar face to locals and tourists alike on the streets of the riverside in Phnom Penh. The one-armed painter and illustrator often hawks his work near the night market on weekends and public holidays. He

  • Five-year-old Hanuman dances his way into hearts of Cambodia

    A young talent from a new-established settlement has emerged, captivating the online world with his mesmerising performances of the traditional Cambodian monkey dance. Roeun Kakada is a five-year-old prodigy who has taken the social media sphere by storm with his exceptional dance skills and dedication

  • Fresh Covid warnings as Thai hospital fills

    A senior health official reminds the public to remain vigilant, as neighbouring countries experience an increase in Covid-19 cases, with the latest surge appearing to be a result of the Omicron XBB.1.5 sub-variant. Or Vandine, secretary of state and spokeswoman for the Ministry of Health,

  • New Law on Taxation comes into effect

    Cambodia has enacted the eagerly-awaited new Law on Taxation, which aims to improve the national tax regime’s compliance with present and future international standards and economic conditions; encourage accountability, effectiveness and transparency in the collection process; and promote investment in the Kingdom. King Norodom