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Sihanoukville to have sufficient clean water supply ‘in 40 days’

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Children fill bottles at a village’s groundwater pump. Hong Menea

Sihanoukville to have sufficient clean water supply ‘in 40 days’

The head of the Preah Sihanouk provincial water authority told The Post on Wednesday that in the next 40 days, Sihanoukville will again have a sufficient supply of clean water.

It credited the work of Anco Water Supply Co Ltd in building reservoirs and connecting mains pipes from the company’s distribution centres to provincial water authorities for this.

Preah Sihanouk water authority chief Phorn Ratanak said Anco has completed two main reservoirs, with each able to produce about 60,000 cubic metres of clean water per day, while the demand in the province is only some 40,000 cubic metres.

Ratanak said although the two reservoirs have been completed and are capable of supplying more than enough water to consumers, the network connecting the reservoirs to distribution centres, especially in Preah Sihanouk, is not yet complete due to some changes and the ongoing removal of old pipelines and installation of smaller ones direct to customers.

“Based on Anco’s development speed, the networks from water reservoirs to distribution centres will be completed in 40 days at most, so in the next 40 days the province will be able to provide enough clean water again,” he said.

Anco’s provincial director-general Nam Kie Teng told The Post on Wednesday that there is a surplus of more than 100,000 cubic metres of clean water at distribution centres across the province. However, due to the limits of the distribution network, there remained minor supply issues in some areas.

Kie Teng said the company is working day and night to repair and replace pipes and create additional networks to supply water to the Preah Sihanouk provincial water authority and connect to local residences from the main pipeline. He said the work would be completed by the end of January.

Ratanak said that some parts of Prek Tup Lake had been filled with sand, so its water level was receding. He said the authority cannot pump water from the lake to produce clean water because it will affect the area’s biodiversity.

“Because of the lack of fresh water resources, the water authority has stopped producing clean water temporarily, so we rely on Anco to supply clean water to consumers."

“Prek Tup Lake is a major source of communal fresh water supply for Preah Sihanouk province. For many years, the Preah Sihanouk provincial water authority extracted water from the lake to supply clean water to people in the province. Up to now, there was always enough fresh water from this area,” he said.

After years of peace, Preah Sihanouk province has become one of Cambodia’s four major economic hubs.

The province has seen rapid development, including the construction of factories, hotels and casinos, providing thousands of jobs to the province’s residents and to people from all over the Kingdom.

This brisk development has affected the province’s ability to produce and supply clean water which has recently become a major issue.

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