Gov’t Confident Boeng Kak Will Prosper From Sale

Plans to develop the Boeng Kak lake backpacker area moved an­other step forward Friday with a col­lection of multi-million-dollar agreements between little-known firm Shukaku Inc and a company from China’s Yunnan province, officials said.

Other deals signed between Shukaku and Yunnan Southeast Asia Estate Co Ltd included a new water supply system and zoo in Sihanoukville, Commerce Minister Cham Prasidh said Friday. Further details were not available, but Cham Prasidh added that he was confident the development of Boeng Kak lake would be a success.

“I have no doubt that these projects will be successful because I know the experience these companies have in and out of Yunnan,” he said during the China (Yunnan)-Cambodia Investment and Trade Fair at the Phnom Penh Hotel.

“We will be converting waste water into a resort,” Cham Prasidh said of the popular Boeng Kak lake area. “We will [be] converting reeds into buildings.”

Phnom Penh Deputy Governor Pa Socheatvong estimated Monday that development of the Boeng Kak lake area would cost Shukaku Inc and Yunnan Southeast Asia Estate Co Ltd around $500 million.

“For a big investment project like this, local firms have to cooperate with foreign firms,” he said, adding that details of the development plan for the lake have not been finalized.

Deputy Prime Minister Sok An, who presided over Friday’s ceremony, said that he looked forward to building a closer investment and trade relationship with Yunnan province.

Qin Guangrong, governor of Yunnan province, told the meeting that his province has much to offer Cambodia in the way of development.

“We are willing to share our experiences and techniques in exploring hydropower and mineral resources with Cambodia,” he said.

According to a news release is­sued by the Department of Com­merce of Yunnan Province, bilateral trade between China and Cam­bo­dia reached $733 million dollars in 2006.

On Saturday, China-Yunnan Cooperation Co Ltd signed a memorandum of understanding with the Ministry of Mines and Energy for the construction of a $300 million 235-megawatt hydropower plant in Pursat province, said Ith Praing, secretary of state for the ministry.

The project, planned for Veal Veng district, is expected to be completed in four to five years, he added.


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