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Tourism investment jump

The tourism sector is the largest target for approved foreign investment in the first five months, according to statistics from the Council for the Development of Cambodia obtained yesterday.

Some 42 large scale projects worth US$2.616 billion were given the green light in 2011 to the end of May, more than double the value of approvals in the period last year, the statistics show.

Foreign investment was increasing in the Kingdom, with the tourism and services sector as the largest winner this year, CDC Evaluation and Incentive Investment Department Director Yuon Heng said yesterday.

“Our good relationship with foreign investors makes them feel confident with investing here,” he said.

The CDC figures show two tourism projects worth a total of $2.188 billion being approved in the first five months.

The services sector, which includes telecommunications, had two projects worth $192 million, compared to one project worth $85 million approved in the same period of 2010.

The industrial sector, including garment factories, saw 35 projects worth $171 million approved in the first five months of this year, compared to 27 projects worth $603 million given the go-ahead in the same period in 2010.

However, the figures represent pledged investment, and do not necessarily translate into actual investment, experts said.

“The real capital investment figure will change,” Cambodian Economic Association President Chan Sophal said yesterday.

He noted an increase in the figures bodes well for the Kingdom.

“If it represents true capital investment, it’s very good for the Cambodian economy.”

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