Korean centre invests in closer relations

Korean centre invests in closer relations

090422_20.jpg
090422_20.jpg

Photo by: SOVANN PHILONG

A new Korean-Cambodian trade and cultural centre in Phnom Penh is on track for a July launch.

A new centre to promote trade and cultural relations between Cambodia and Korea is on track for a July launch, project manager Hee Chan Park said Monday.

The $9-million Cambodia-Korea Phnom Penh Gyeongbuk Culture, Tourism and Trade Promotion Centre (PGCT Centre), being built by Korean company DKC&C Co, will also contain office and retail space for rent. Park said the rental price had not been set but that it would likely be around $25 per square metre.

The centre is being funded by the Korean government and jointly managed by officials from the South Korean province of Gyeongbuk and Phnom Penh Municipality.

Park said the 4,189-square-metre site on the corner of Sothearos and  Sihanouk boulevards, next to the Phnom Penh Centre, was granted on a 30-year lease. Ground was broken on the development in August last year and construction began in September. The three-storey building, with underground parking for 71 cars, has a gross floor area of 8,553 square metres, 3,181 square metres of which were designated public space.

The building comes after several projects funded from South Korea were abandoned or delayed over the last year.

According to figures from the Korean Embassy, Korean investment in Cambodia fell from $629.49 million in 2007 to $472.89 million in 2008 despite an increase in planned investment from $828.4 million in 2007 to $1.257 billion in 2008.

Park said he expected investment from Korea to rebound. "Cambodia is a good opportunity for businesspersons looking for investments, so Cambodia has good opportunities for the future," he said, adding DKC&C was looking for a second project in Cambodia following completion of the PGCT Centre.

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