The Ministry of Public Works and Transport has sold more than 180,000 special and personalised number plates, collecting more than $61 million since the sales were launched in 2017.
But in the first nine months of this year, sales have dropped by 4.8 per cent compared to the same period last year.
The ministry revealed the figure during a Facebook live show to answer queries from the public on the subject on September 30.
Ministry secretary of state Koy Sodany – the speaker in the live show and head of the committee for the sale of special and personalised number plates – said that since the launch, the ministry has sold a total of 179,034 special plates, collecting $46,578,158.
The sales of personalised number plates, which began at the beginning of 2020, brought in $14,978,151 with 7,578 plates sold
“The sale of these plates in the first nine months of this year dropped 4.8 per cent compared to the same period last year due to Covid-19,” she said.
Sodany noted that in the first nine months of this year, sales of the number plates earned $12 million, compared to around $13 million over the same period last year.
She expected that the sale of these number plates will increase after the pandemic.
According to the ministry, a special plate has "Phnom Penh" or the name of the province issued in Khmer at the top and in Latin below, The number begins with one class digit, dependent on the type of vehicle, followed by one or two Latin letters and then four digits that can be specified.
A personalised plate has the word “Cambodia” at the top, with one to eight letters and numbers on the next line. It contains special arrangements of letters and numbers, including people’s names if they so desire. On the right side, there is a QR Code which has information about the vehicle. The number plate can be purchased online through vehicle.mpwt.gov.kh.
Sodany said each personalised plate costs from two million to one billion riel ($500 to $250,000). The price can be higher, depending on public bidding. The plate can be used for a lifetime by the purchaser and can also be sold if the owner sells the vehicle.
Kong Ratanak, director of the Institute for Road Safety, said the use of such plates has no negative impact. He said the plates not only gives well-off users more options but also generate more income for the state coffers.
“Cambodia still has road traffic safety problems, but it is related to the behaviour of road users and not to the plates,” he said.
Ratanak urged the ministry to look into ways to improve infrastructure such as lane lines and improving roads. If road users have good number plates and good roads to use, it will contribute to a reduction in traffic accidents, he said.