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Thai FM strikes hotel, border deals

Thai FM strikes hotel, border deals

A THAI joint-venture company signed an agreement with the Ministry of Tourism on

Sept 4 to build a luxury hotel near the ancient Angkor temples.

Thai

Nakorn Patana and the Minor Group will build a 210-room four-star hotel between

Siem Reap and the temples with the first phase of 150 rooms expected to be ready

in 1997, according to a ministry statement.

"The project will provide

hundreds of jobs during construction and thereafter in operation," Tourism

Minister Veng Sreyvuth said.

"This is the first major tourism investment

project signed by the ministry with Thailand and it strengthens the good

relationship and cooperation with our friendly neighbors," he

said.

Visiting Thai Foreign Minister Kasem Kasemsri, his Cambodian

counterpart Ung Huot, and Co-Premiers Prince Norodom Ranariddh and Hun Sen

watched as the pact was signed.

Angkor Wat and other temples from the 9th

to 15th centuries are Cambodia's biggest tourist draw, and numbers of visitors

are increasing.

Kasem, meanwhile, was striking more deals with Cambodian

authorities during his visit.

A joint Thai-Cambodian agreement on a joint

border commission and extradition treaty was discussed, and both likely soon to

be finalized.

Huot and Kasem discussed problems of overlapping claims to

areas potentially rich in oil and gas reserves, while Kasem pledged to return 13

ancient Cambodian artefacts seized from smugglers.

He did not say whether

the two sides had discussed the opening of more checkpoints on their long

border, though Thai officials had earlier said the issue would be

raised.

A Ministry of Foreign Affairs official said that a border

mechanism agreement was being pushed ahead.

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