The Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway will open as a toll road from November 1, with the company administering the highway – China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) – declaring a 20 per cent discount on all tolls for the first year of operations.

At the same time, traffic police warned that there would be zero tolerance for driving offences, particularly speeding, and that fines would be issued.

On October 28, CRBC announced that charges, to be calculated by the type of vehicle and the distance travelled, will apply on November 1 this year through October 31, 2023.

According to its tariffs, vehicles travelling on the expressway will be divided into five categories, beginning with Category A – family vehicles with no more than seven seats – and ending with Category E, trucks which can carry more than 20 tonnes of cargo. Family vehicles and the heaviest of trucks will pay $0.064 and $0.32 per kilometre, respectively, for the first year.

With the 20 per cent discount, high-speed commuters will pay between $12 and $60 for a one-way trip on the 187.05km route. The journey should take around two hours.

Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol said at an October 27 press conference that fines would be issued as soon as the road is officially opened as a toll road.

“On the expressway, cars are permitted to travel at 120km/h, while trucks may reach 80 to 100km/h. There are speed cameras in operation in various locations on the road, and fines will be issued to anyone who caught exceeding the speed limit,” he added.

He added that there are about 200 security cameras deployed on the route, so any illegal activity would be captured on film. At least 18 police officers would be on duty 24 hours a day monitoring the cameras, so immediate action would be taken in response to any offences.

The expressway was opened for a one-month free trial for October, during which between 9,000 and 20,000 vehicles passed along the road each week.