Cambodia never to allow Chinese troops on its soil

China-backed Funan Techo Canal project reignites ‘secret deal’ charges but Cambodia has exceptional historical cause to hold Beijing at bay.

Cambodia’s newly proposed Funan Techo Canal, a project under the auspicious of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, aims to connect the national capital to coastal areas to facilitate trade, reduce logistics costs and streamline transport – all the while reducing dependence on Vietnamese ports.

But recent reports have suggested the Beijing-financed, US$1.7 billion channel could also be used as a gateway for Chinese forces, thus threatening the security of neighboring Vietnam and advancing the notion that Cambodia serves as China’s willing proxy.

The reports, citing a research study issued by an institute under the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Associations, suggest the canal could open the way for Chinese military vessels to travel deep into Cambodia via the Gulf of Thailand and toward the Cambodia-Vietnam border.

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