Home » Mondulkiri Airport Feasibility Study to Enhance Agri-Tourism and Connectivity

Mondulkiri Airport Feasibility Study to Enhance Agri-Tourism and Connectivity

by Surya Narayan
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The Royal Government of Cambodia has granted approval for an international consortium to initiate a comprehensive feasibility study concerning the construction of a new airport in Ou Reang district, Mondulkiri province. This strategic project aligns with the government’s ‘Mondulkiri Tourism Development Master Plan 2021-2035,’ aiming to stimulate agri-tourism development in the region and enhance connectivity between northeastern provinces and other regions of Cambodia.

The authorization for the feasibility study was conveyed to the FOCUS Consortium through a letter dated January 9, signed by Secretary of State Chheang Vannarith, from the Office of the Council of Ministers. The consortium comprises investors from Malaysia, China, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and will be represented by Focus Trans Global Venture Co. Ltd.

The feasibility study, in collaboration with the State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SCCA), will explore the development framework of the Mondulkiri airport, adopting a Build-Transfer-Operate (BTO) model. It will also encompass the planning and development of an adjacent satellite town to serve as a transport hub, including an air cargo center.

Sin Chanserey Vutha, spokesperson for the SSCA, clarified that the authorization for the feasibility study does not guarantee the project’s completion. The consortium must complete the study to make an investment decision, and if the study outcomes are unfavorable, the investment cannot proceed.

However, should the project move forward successfully, it is anticipated that Mondulkiri will experience increased economic activity, particularly in agro-industry and tourism, aligning with the government’s economic development plans.

The decision to explore the construction of Mondulkiri Airport follows a similar grant given to Power China International Group Ltd (PIG) in December 2021. Initially, Power China proposed a construction area spanning 300 hectares with estimated costs exceeding $80 million. However, due to challenges posed by the global Covid-19 pandemic, Power China withdrew from the project, paving the way for new investors.

The envisioned airport is part of a broader initiative to transform Mondulkiri, Cambodia’s largest and least densely populated province, into the country’s fourth economic pole, following Phnom Penh, Sihanoukville, and Siem Reap, as outlined in existing government plans.

The Mondulkiri Tourism Development Master Plan 2021-2035, launched officially in April 2022, outlines substantial development in tourism and agriculture industries across the province. It envisions the province’s economic growth, Senmonorom city’s transformation into a multi-purpose development hub, and the conversion of the airport zone in Ou Reang district into a satellite city.

Importantly, the Master Plan emphasizes the preservation of natural resources and indigenous cultural heritage while fostering economic development. This balanced approach aims to ensure sustainable socio-economic development in the province for years to come.

The Mondulkiri Airport feasibility study represents a significant step towards realizing these ambitious development goals, further propelling Cambodia’s economic growth and promoting the region’s unique agri-tourism offerings.

Source: Khmer Times

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