City Hall Threatens to Revoke Parking Licenses

Phnom Penh City Hall said Tuesday it would revoke the licenses of companies whose subcontractors are accused of routinely overcharging motorists for parking at some of the city’s markets unless the problem is fixed, according to a news release posted Wednesday on the municipality’s website.

“If any company continued to violate the record book, City Hall will cancel the contract,” reads the statement, which says Tuesday’s meeting was presided over by Phnom Penh deputy governor Seng Ratanak.

The meeting included city authorities and officials from the city’s markets as well as representatives from the companies Phanimex and Keo Ratanak Sopheap, which have licenses to rent out parking space at markets in the city.

During the meeting, local authorities and market managers complained that the companies who were subletting the parking lots were charging more money than what was printed on the tickets, negatively affecting both shoppers and vendors.

The set price for parking a motorcycle at any of the city’s markets is 300 riel, or about $0.07, while the price for bicycles is 200 riel, or about $0.05. But motorists say they are regularly charged 500 riel, or about $0.12, for a bicycle and 1,000 riel, or about $0.25, for a motorcycle.

Keo Ratanak Sopheap has the contract to run parking lots at Phsar Kandal and Phsar Chas. Phanimex controls multiple market parking lots in the city.

Non Sokhoeun, 31, a manager of the parking lot outside Phsar Chas, said Wednesday that the higher prices are needed for people working at the parking lots to get by, and to pay rent to Keo Ratanak Sopheap.

“We need to take 1,000 riel or 500 riel for things like food and to rent the location,” he said.

Kou Sy, 25, a worker collecting parking fees at Phsar Chas, said the parking lot follows the law, but that motorists sometimes provide extra money to the attendants out of goodwill.

“We take money according to the law, but sometimes people understand hard economic times and give 1,000 riel,” he said.

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