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Sihanoukville port sees steady growth

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Boats dock at Sihanoukville Autonomous Port. Photograph: Mai Vireak/Phnom Penh Post

Revenue at Sihanoukville Autonomous Port increased 13.6 per cent year on year between January and June, port officials confirmed yesterday.

As the state-owned enterprise gears up for listing on the Cambodia Securities Exchange, the neighbouring Sihanoukville Special Economic Zone will play an increasingly important role in boosting throughput, insiders said.

The port – Cambodia’s largest – brought in about US$14 million in revenues during the period, Chief Executive Officer Lou Kim Chhun said. Garment and rice exports accounted for the bulk of outgoing shipments.

“[Gross domestic product] is around 6 per cent. The port’s growth is linked closely to the growth of the whole country,” he said yesterday by phone.

Next to the port is the Sihanoukville Special Economic Zone, which officially launched in May.

The SEZ has 16 factories in operation and four more preparing to open, Michelle Zhang, a manager at the SEZ said in an email yesterday.

Like Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone, Sihanoukville’s is emerging as a hot spot for diversified exports.

Among garment factories – the country’s staple GDP generator – are two Japanese electronics companies and one Chinese-Cambodian bio-technology joint venture, Zhang said.

“It’s obvious that the more investors in the SEZ, the more this will contribute to growth at the port,” she said.

About 80 per cent of the SEZ’s exports leave the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port, while nearly all materials used in SEZ factories enter through the port, Zhang added.

To contact the reporter on this story: Don Weinland at don.weinland@phnompenhpost.com

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