PM Says Cement Production To Begin in 2008

Early in the new year, Cambodia will begin manufacturing cement with the capacity to produce as much as a million tons annually, Prime Minister Hun Sen an­nounced December 5.

Speaking at an event in the capital to launch a government and UN trade integration strategy, the premier said he is scheduled to inaugurate a Kampot province cement works personally on Jan 14.

Hun Sen also called on regional countries to consider importing Cambodian cement.

Khaou Phallaboth, President of the construction and engineering firm Khaou Chuly, said his company held a 20 percent stake in a joint venture with Thailand’s Siam Cement Group, and had created the Kampot Cement Co Ltd in January of 2006.

“This is the first modern cement factory in Cambodia,” he said Wednes­day, adding that total startup investment was forecast to be $300 million with $130 million spent so far.

The 400-employee factory was at first likely to be able to meet only 40 of the Cambodian market demand, however, which is currently 2.2 million tons a year. “We will be able to increase production to up to 2 million tons between 2009 and 2010,” he said.

Sung Bonna, general manager of Bonna Realty Group, said De­c 6 that he foresaw no slowdown in Cam­bo­dia’s demand for cement.

“I don’t see any signal that the speed of construction will slow down,” he said.

Kampot Deputy Governor Suot Yea said the growth of heavy industry in his province would help provide jobs and stem the outward flow of migrant workers to the capital. “If we have more factories in Kampot, poverty in this province will be reduced sooner,” he said. “We have mineral resources and the possibility for other cement factories.”


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