Proposal for Japanese Flights Should Be Studied, Sok An Says

Minister of Cabinet Sok An has told a Japanese business official that Cambodia would welcome air flights from Japan.

Seikichi Tatsuyama, president of the Japan-Cambodia Friend­ship Association, suggested the establishment of direct flights between Phnom Penh and Siem Reap and Ishikawa Prefecture, located in north-central Japan.

Sok An, who has been running troubled Royal Air Cam­bodge since August, suggested the two governments study the proposal, according to Lim Samkal, adviser to the Council of Ministers.

Most Japanese visitors now fly to Cambodia through Bangkok or Ho Chi Minh City.

About 20,000 Japanese visit Cambodia annually, a number tourist officials said would in­crease to 80,000 with direct flights. By comparison, 1 million Japanese visit Thailand every year and about 110,000 visit Viet­nam.

Sathol Miyura, country manager of the Japanese tour company APEX, said the number of Japa­nese visiting Cambodia has been doubling every year.

“I pray 10 times per day for a direct flight from Tokyo, Osaka or anywhere in Japan to Cam­bodia,” he said. “We want as many Japa­nese to visit Angkor Wat as visit Thailand and Viet­nam.”

Any such deal would not happen immediately.

One drawback is that the runway at the airport in Ishikawa Prefecture is too short for the large aircraft that would be needed to make the route profitable.



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