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Project approvals retain traction even as Covid constricts construction

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Workers worked at a construction site in Phnom Penh's Chamkarmon district on January 25, 2021. Hong Menea

Project approvals retain traction even as Covid constricts construction

The government approved six more investment projects with capital of over $106 million, even as the Covid-19 pandemic ravages the Cambodian economy, leading to a slowdown in construction projects.

In a May 5 press release, the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) said it had approved final registration certificates for Jin Bei Palace Co Ltd's $48.7 million 195-room five-star hotel in Commune IV's Village 4 in Sihanoukville, which the CDC estimates will create 380 new jobs.

It also gave the nod to Kuantech (Cambodia) International Co Ltd's $29.7 million assembly plant for electronic components, especially those used in electronic face masks and air purifiers. The project is set to be in Tram Kak district's Popel commune of Takeo province and provide 628 jobs.

Santelys Pharmaceutical Co Ltd's $12.5 million pharmaceutical factory in Khsach Kandal district's Sanlong commune of Kandal province, and Yiankang Biological Technology Co Ltd's $2.9 million food precessing plant in Stung Hav district's Tumnob Rolok commune of Preah Sihanouk province will bring in 215 and 210 jobs.

Lesso (Cambodia) Trading Co Ltd's $9.4 million PVC pipe and fittings factory in Ang Snuol's Chhak Chhoeu Neang commune of Kandal province, and Ocean Treasure Dyeing & Printing Co Ltd's $3.1 million project in Kong Pisei district's Preah Nipean commune of Kampong Speu province will generate 201 and 218 jobs.

Hong Vanak, director of International Economics at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, told The Post last month that each direct investment brings significant socio-economic benefits to the Kingdom.

He noted that April's CDC approvals were mainly focused in textile and travel products, which he pointed out are widely available on the EU, US and Canadian markets.

Endowed with a favourable geographical location, investment laws and diplomatic relations, boasting bilateral free trade agreements with a number of countries and regions, and retaining a regional charm, Cambodia will have the opportunity to bring in sizeable investments down the line, he said.

In 2020, the CDC approved 238 investment projects worth a total of $8.2 billion, down 12 per cent in value from 2019.

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