Three new bridges are set to be constructed following the official inauguration of the cable-stay bridge between Koh Pich and Koh Norea (Koh Pich-Koh Norea Bridge) on October 15. 

At the ceremony, Prime Minister Hun Manet emphasised the significance of these bridges, highlighting their contribution to the development of eastern part of the country. 

“Currently, we have eight bridges already built and plan to build three more: [one] connecting Arey Ksat to the night market, the Prek Pra bridge, scheduled for foundation work within this year and another bridge in Chak Angrae Leu. We hope that if all these bridges are connected, it will further boost the economy to the east,” he stated.

The prime minister also affirmed that these bridges would serve as vital arteries for connecting roads and infrastructure, thereby stimulating economic growth, especially along National Road (NR) 1, which is expected to experience prosperity in its region.

“With this extraordinary achievement, we must also celebrate and strive to ensure that the potential and conditions for development are maintained, alongside peace and stability. If we are busy fighting, then we have no time for building. So, I hope our … development efforts will continue,” he added.

He said that the bridge would facilitate traffic, freight and local economic expansion, including in the Chbar Ampov and Chamkarmon districts of the capital.

“Of course, the beneficiaries are varied: companies benefit from investments, workers through their salaries and others from business opportunities and the public park.

But importantly, it’s beneficial for the people living in Phnom Penh. This represents an environmentally friendly and equitable development that benefits everyone,” he explained.

Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng noted that the construction of the Koh Pich-Koh Norea Bridge, which cost $38 million, took nearly 35 months. The project was funded by the Koh Norea Development Area Fund of the Overseas Cambodian Investment Corporation (OCIC).

He added that the achievement aligns with the second of the five key priorities of the government’s Pentagonal Strategy - Phase 1, aimed at reducing fuel expenditure due to congestion and easing commuting for the economy of the people.

Pung Kheav Se, chairman of OCIC Group, stated at the inauguration that before the development of the bridge travelling just 5km from Independence Monument to Wat Niroth Raingsey in the Chbar Ampov district could take up to two hours due to heavy traffic around the Chbar Ampov Bridge.

He noted that since the temporary opening of the bridge as well as the Koh Norea Twin Dragon Bridge during the Pchum Ben festival, traffic congestion has significantly reduced.

He also mentioned that OCIC built the 4,200-meter-long Norea Park along the lower Mekong River, which he said is currently the country’s most beautiful and longest park, attracting 5,000 to 10,000 visitors daily.