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Airports pass 10M passenger mark

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The Kingdom’s three main international airports welcome their 10 millionth passenger. Scott Howes

Airports pass 10M passenger mark

The Kingdom’s three main international airports on Wednesday welcomed their 10 millionth passenger this year, according to a Cambodia Airports press release.

The press release said the country’s largest three airports have now handled more than 10 million passengers this year, with the figure obtained by combining all international and domestic passengers who have passed through Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Sihanoukville international airports.

The State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA) warned airline operators that they needed to be prepared to meet the growth in passengers using the Kingdom’s airports.

Cambodia Airports CEO Eric Delobel said that improved connectivity between the three airports has significantly contributed to bringing more and more passengers into the Kingdom.

“Solid traffic at airports reflects tourism growth in Cambodia, especially driven by the new attractiveness of the country’s coastal areas and a buoyant economy conducive to business opportunities."

“On a global level, we also take advantage of being part of the worldwide network of airports managed by Vinci Airports SAS, our parent company."

The business model that Vinci Airports has developed for Cambodia’s airport system has proved relevant and I am confident that it will guide us for future successes,” he said, adding that passenger traffic in Cambodia has doubled over the last five years.

SSCA spokesman Sinn Chanserey Vutha said the aviation market has expanded rapidly, exceeding his organisation’s expectations for the industry.

“The number of passengers has increased unexpectedly – it shows that our policy for economic development is on the right track."

“Aviation operators need to prepare well to benefit from the growth as well as [develop] a strategy and business plan to meet customers’ [demands],” he said.

Chanserey Vutha added that on average at least four airline companies register annually around the globe and cargo traffic is on the rise as well.

One World Aviation Cambodia cargo manager Bunthai Uddom said aviation market trends are on the rise and the Kingdom’s real estate sector is a hot spot for Chinese investors.

“If we look at the figures, Chinese passengers are our leading customers, and our real estate industry is growing and attracting a lot of investors to our kingdom, especially Chinese investors."

“So year-on-year, the aviation market keeps growing and airline companies continue to expand their direct flights as well as their scheduled flights,” he said.

Last year, the number of passengers going through Cambodia’s international airports totalled 8.8 million – 4.2 million each for Phnom Penh and Siem Reap international airports.

Sihanoukville International Airport started from a low base, but has experienced triple-digit growth having handled 338,000 passengers this year.

Combined, all three airports serve more than 55 destinations and welcome 700 regular flights per week.

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