The company behind a proposed $4 million tourist port in Kep province has applied for approval to boost its investment to $20 million and build a conference centre on site, a company representative said Monday.
The woman, who declined to be named, said Rotong Development Group had asked for a land concession on more than 100 hectares along the beach for the project.
Approval had been granted by provincial authorities, but a decision was still pending from the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) and the Ministry for the Environment, she said. "We cannot do anything on the proposed site until we get approval from the two institutions," she said.
Kep Governor Has Sareth said he had already approved the expanded plan. "I don't know when a final decision will be made. It is now under the consideration of the relevant ministries and institutions to determine the environment impact of the development," he said.
Neither the CDC nor the Environment Ministry could be reached for comment Monday.
Kep province tourism chief Chhay Khoeun said Monday the port would link the province to Vietnam's Phu Quoc island via two ferries, each capable of holding 220 passengers. The province would attempt to encourage tourists visiting the island to take the 90-minute journey to Kep, he said.
Tourism Minister Thong Khon told the Post in May that Phu Quoc has become a popular destination for tourists in the region and could draw around 3 million tourists per year by 2012.
ADDITIONAL REPORTING BY SOEUN SAY