The Kep Provincial Administration is pushing forward the preparation of plans and maps to expand the province’s public recreation areas – from only 300m currently to 3km along the province’s nearly 27km coastline – in Thmey village of Kep town’s Prey Thom commune to cater for tourists.
Provincial governor Som Piseth told The Post on March 15 that until now, the preparation was about 70 to 80 per cent complete and would be finished by the Khmer New Year in April.
The plans would then be submitted to Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Chea Sophara, who is also president of the National Committee for Coastal Management and Development, for approval.
Piseth confirmed that although Cambodia is facing the Covid-19 crisis, it would not interfere with the preparation for the development of the province’s coastal areas.
“Once prepared and approved, the provincial administration will display the plans and maps to the public. People will know where development is happening, what companies have been contracted, and how the work will develop tourism,” he said.
According to Piseth, currently only 300m of Kep’s coastline is developed, which does not meet growing demand from tourists each year. The province’s coastline has a total length of nearly 27km.
Ho Vandy, an adviser to Cambodia Tourism Association, said Kep and neighbouring Kampot province continue to develop beaches under the mandate of each provincial governor according to the actual situation of growth in tourism.
According to Vandy, Kep is currently a major coastal tourist destination after Sihanoukville. Amid the Covid-19 crisis, he said planning and development of coastal areas is seen as essential to save the national economy.
“Kep is the second-largest [coastal tourist attraction]. Tourists choose Kep after Sihanoukville and many other islands, so planning for coastal development is indispensable,” he said.