Construction investment rises sharply

Construction investment rises sharply

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A new building in Phnom Penh. Photograph: Sreng Mengsrung/Phnom Penh Post

Investment in construction in the Kingdom during the first nine months of this year rose 83.6 per cent, according to data from Ministry of Land Management Urban Planning and Construction last week.

The data showed that during the first nine months of this year the ministry approved 1,357 construction projects involving 5,593,284 square metres of total construction area and worth US$1.8 billion.

The same period a year earlier saw 1,689 approved projects over 3,228,799 square metres  of total construction area and worth $999 million.  

Lao Tepseiha, deputy director of the construction department of the Ministry of Land management Urban Planning  and Construction, said it is the biggest-ever increase, and involves projects as diverse as satellite city development projects, apartment buildings, villas, houses, shopping centres, business centres, offices, educational institutions, and hospitals as well as banks, hotels, factories, warehouses, and petrol stations.

“The growth is a good sign for the construction sector in Cambodia, when foreign investors are very interested to invest in construction. It’s good for now and the future,” he said.

“I think that given economic growth, political stability, and good cooporation with our foreign partners, investment will grow higher than last year because there are lots of new applications requested to the ministry, higher than the applications in September,” he added.   

He said increasing domestic investment due to confidence in  the political stability in Cambodia is increasing.

“There are many people investing in residental construction projects: some people use housing loans to buy house and some use their own cash.

These factors make investors feel more confident in their projects, especially projects in Phnom Penh,” he said.  

Keuk Narin, vice president of Asia Real Estate, said the actual growth in the construction sector is certainly growing, especially new high buildings which have been shooting up everywhere.

“Property prices have slowly recovered in the last two years, unlike in 2007 and 2008, when the price sharply fell. The prices go up from 1 per cent to 15 per cent this year, I think it’s still good in the Cambodian market,” he said.  

He said if this sector increasingly improves, it’s very competetive, which makes investors become more careful in their construction quality, drawing, services, and investment. Prices are also carefully studied.  

Economic analyst Nov Seyha said the growth started since 2011, in both investment projects and property prices.

He said “the growth is good for Cambodia, where investment is growing very fast. I think the construction sector is a strong skeleton to support the growing economy”, adding that economic flows will increase when the property sector grows, but it will not grow sharply like in 2007.

To contact the reporter on this story: Seun Son at [email protected]

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