Poipet airport still ‘under study’

Poipet airport still ‘under study’

Poipet, a Cambodian town opposite Aranyaprathet district in Sa Kaeo, plans an airport to boost its economy. (Bangkok Post photo)
Poipet, a Cambodian town opposite Aranyaprathet district in Sa Kaeo, plans an airport to boost its economy. (Bangkok Post photo)

Work on the Poipet airport project has yet to start despite the government authorising its development more than a year ago.

A check with the State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA) revealed that the investor that was granted permission to develop the province’s first airport has yet to begin work, the Khmer Times reported on Thursday.

Poipet Airport Investment (PAI) received approval from the government to resume work on the airport in May last year.

“Nothing moved. The investor is conducting studies,” SSCA spokesman Sin Chanserey Vutha told the Khmer Times last week, adding he is not sure when construction will start.

Poipet governor San Sean Ho told the local media earlier that the airport will be built on a 300-hectare land. The proposed airport site is located 13 kilometres from the town proper.

When PAI’s application was approved last year, Chanserey Vutha disclosed that the airport will be located on land owned by PAI.

“From what we know, [PAI] has the resources to complete the project,” he said. The project is expected to cost $40 to $50 million.

PAI was first granted permission to build the Poipet airport back in 2007. However, the project was shelved due to the 2008 global financial crisis.

The company decided to revive the project after seeing the potential for development in Poipet, an important border town located in Banteay Meanchey province.

The proposed airport is designed for domestic flights and will be able to handle aircraft as big as the Airbus A320 or Boeing 737.

Once completed, it is expected to boost the economy of Poipet and nearby areas. Poipet, which borders Aranyaprathet district in Sa Kaeo, is among the fastest-growing areas in Cambodia.

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