Real estate experts in Cambodia say that Sihanoukville’s rapid recovery of economic activity is a good sign for the sector in Cambodia’s four coastal provinces.

The government has frequently expressed its ambition to turn the Kingdom’s four coastal provinces into world-class tourist destinations in the future with Sihanoukville and its Special Economic Zone a particular focus for infrastructure and development dollars.

Cambodian Valuation and Estate Agents Association (CVEA) president Chrek Soknim lauded Cambodia for its goal of turning these four coastal provinces into tourism spots to revive the economy through Cambodia’s tourist sector after it was severely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“The situation of change and increasing pressure, especially on investment activities in the construction of hotels, guesthouses, apartments and other tourist services in these four coastal provinces will become even greater. Preah Sihanouk province might yield positive results at a faster pace because the province has the support of investment and accommodation from people of mixed backgrounds, especially Chinese people, unlike other coastal provinces,” he said.

He said the real estate sector plays a vital part of stimulating the growth of the national economy, but it cannot grow on its own because it depends on some priority sectors such as tourism, trade, investment and the health of small and medium enterprises.

Therefore, as an economist and real estate expert, Soknim said he believes that the real estate sector can grow only if the government opens investment mechanisms to boost these priority areas widely through government-supported mechanisms and private sector-supported mechanisms.

At the 16th World Congress of the World-Bays Club, Prime Minister Hun Sen unveiled Cambodia’s plans, saying that in the future the four coastal provinces will become world-class tourist destinations.

“Cambodia will be committed to making our coastal town sustainable as we have set a development strategy to turn the four coastal provinces into world-class tourist destinations. Preah Sihanouk province is a vacation destination and a multi-purpose economic zone. Kep is a high-end and luxury tourist destination. Kampot is a tourist destination, cultural heritage and agro-tourism area and Koh Kong is world-class eco-tourism destination,” said the premier.

The government has projected that Cambodia will see around 11 million domestic tourists in 2023 and reach a figure of seven million international tourists by 2026 or 2027.