Photo essay: Phnom Penh and China-backed building boom

Towering over low shops and French colonial–era townhouses grows a new city in tribute to the politics of the present.

Phnom Penh was long known as a relatively low-rise city, at least compared to towering neighbours such as Bangkok, Jakarta, Ho Chi Minh City, and Singapore. These cities all saw their skylines shoot up in recent decades – long before Phnom Penh’s belated boom – as their country’s economies expanded and modernised.

Cambodia, too, has seen heady economic growth over the past two decades, rarely dipping below 8%. Yet the ravages of war and foreign occupation from the late 1960s until at least the early 1990s meant catch-up for the capital’s skyline did not come until midway through the current decade.

In full: http://www.lowyinterpreter.org/the-interpreter/photo-essay-phnom-penh-and-china-backed-building-boom

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