The government has nearly finished the draft of the Intermodal Transport Master Plan 2021-2030 (the Plan), a Ministry of Economy and Finance press release said on Wednesday.
The draft seeks to promote Cambodia’s connectivity, reduce transportation and logistics costs, integrate the Kingdom into the region and the globe, and increase competitiveness, as well as diversify the economy to boost sustainability, it said.
The draft is expected to be finished by mid-2020.
Minister of Economy and Finance Aun Pornmoniroth led an inter-ministerial meeting on Tuesday to review the latest developments of the draft, it said.
The China International Engineering Consulting Corporation (CIECC) started preparing the draft in mid-2018. It is currently being submitted to the relevant government institutions for more input and recommendations.
Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol, Minister of Environment Say Sam Al and Council for the Development of Cambodia secretary-general Sok Chenda Sophea also attended the meeting.
The Plan comprises seven master plans – the intermodal transport master plan, land transport master plan, railway transportation master plan, waterway transport master plan, sea transport master plan, air route transport master plan and logistics master plan.
“The Cambodian government believes that the Intermodal Transport Master Plan 2021-2030 will play an important role and serve as a roadmap as well as define the common framework of the transport infrastructure development plan, including a logistics system that will help to enhance the efficiency of public investments in Cambodian transport infrastructure,” the press release said.
The Plan will focus on the quality of the Kingdom’s land transport rather than quantity.
It will continue to develop transportation routes via air and sea as well, and will restore and enhance infrastructure and the connectivity of transport via rail and waterways, the release said.
The CIECC team responsible for the draft is led by project director She Xiangyun and has received financial assistance from the Chinese government in its studies.
Pornmoniroth said the Kingdom “really appreciates the participation and support from the concerned ministries and institutions over the master plan’s feasibility studies”.
Next year, the government plans to allocate a budget of $1.4 billion for construction and restoration of infrastructure, up 117.9 per cent compared to the amount spent this year, the National Budget Law for 2020 said.
Ministry of Public Works and Transport spokesman Vasim Sorya told The Post on Wednesday that the Plan will present ample opportunities for local and foreign investors.
“Once the master plan is completed we will have a very comprehensive roadmap for transport connectivity, infrastructure development and, more importantly, to set up logistics centres and hubs in some other main areas in provinces and reduce our transport and logistics costs for our exporters,” he said.
Cambodia Freight Forwarders Association president Sin Chanthy welcomed the progress of the feasibility study, which the government approved last year, saying it is time for the draft master plan to be finished and implemented.
“It is a very positive step for the development of our infrastructure, transport and logistics now that we have a comprehensive master plan to be implemented.
“With such high economic growth, it is a must for us to have a clear master plan for our transportation, logistics and infrastructure,” he said.
Cambodia needs more than $13 billion in infrastructure by 2020 if the Kingdom intends to continue attracting foreign investment, a joint survey by the Japan International Cooperation Agency and the International Monetary Fund said in 2011.
It needs about $1.2 billion in infrastructure spending per year, half of which needs to go to new projects and the other half to the maintenance of existing ones, it said.