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Port shipments to soar

Photo by: HECTOR BERMEJO
SHIPMENTS through Sihanoukville Autonomous Port have increased this year
largely on increased exports of rice and acacia wood, Director General
Lou Kim Chhun said.

Some 91,100 Twenty-foot Equivalent Units
(TEUs) were transported through the facility between January and May, an
8.7 percent increase on shipments during the same period last year,
according to port statistics.

An increase in shipments of
products such as garments, oil and coal were main drivers of the growth,
though agriculture and timber products were showing the largest
increase, he said.

“Rice and acacia-wood exports jumped better than expected in the first five months,” Lou Kim Chhun said on Tuesday.

The port is currently shipping 10,000 tonnes of acacia wood to China each month, while imports of oil are also on the rise.

Lou Kim Chhun highlighted the potential of rail shipments from Phnom Penh to the port as increasing overall exports.

The
rail link between the capital and Touk Meas in Kampot province opened
last year, while the leg between Kampot and Sihanoukville is slated for
completion this year.

“We strongly believe that when the
railroad from Touk Meas links with Sihanoukville port, shipments through
the port will increase more next year,” he said.

One of Cambodia’s largest trucking companies, So Nguon Group, is taking a wait and see approach to competition from rail.

“We
don’t think it will affect our business of transportation, but we don’t
know yet. We will wait to see the situation at the time,” said its
President So Nguon on Tuesday.

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