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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Phnom Penh port traffic up 40pc

Phnom Penh port traffic up 40pc

Recovery in garment, agriculture sectors driving rise in shipping traffic

SHIPPING through the Phnom Penh Autonomous Port for the first five months of 2010 increased 40.3 percent over the same period last year, driven by the ongoing recovery of such key sectors as garments and agriculture, officials said this week.

Some 20,997 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units) were transported through the capital’s port in the five months through May, compared to 14,964 TEUs last year, port statistics obtained by the Post Tuesday show.

Month-to-month increases were also recorded, with 4,783 TEUs shipped in May, compared to 4,207 in April, the statistics showed.

“We hope shipments this year will increase more than last year because the economy has been recovering significantly,” said Eang Veng Sun, the Phnom Penh Autonomous Port’s deputy director general.

In January, port director general Hei Bavy targeted total shipping for 2010 at 62,500 TEUs, a 44.3 percent increase from the 43,312 TEUs shipped last year.

Last month, Hei Bavy estimated that shipping through Phnom Penh port will increase fivefold in the next decade as the facility gains popularity among freight companies taking advantage of the capital’s access to international sea ports.

Local trucking companies have also reported a boom month in May, compared with the same month last year, said Sok Cheang, executive director of the Cambodia Trucking Association.

He said the association’s 16 members recorded a 5 percent increase in the volume of freight hauled last month.

Sok Cheang added that he also saw signs that the garment and agriculture sectors – crucial to the trucking business – are getting back on track after taking serious hits during last year’s global financial crisis that saw demand for garments, in particular, plummet.

“We hope our members will have more goods to transport through the port this year,” Sok Cheang said.

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