China bags Cambodian airport contract in blow to French operator

State-owned MCC lands $400m construction deal for new gateway in Phnom Penh.

A major portion of Cambodia’s new international airport in Phnom Penh will be built by a Chinese state-owned company, leaving the French operator of the capital’s current gateway facing an increasingly uncertain future.

Metallurgical Corporation of China won the 2.67 billion yuan ($405 million) contract to design and construct the airfield for the new airport, whose overall $1.5 billion price tag is being bankrolled almost entirely by Beijing.

The airport is part of the Cambodian government’s strategy to boost tourism, but it comes as other planned projects, including a new resort near Angkor Wat, face questions over their long-term feasibility.

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