ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Cambodia to import freight trains
Toll Royal Railway in Cambodia is planning to spend up to US$81 million to import new trains as part of the multimillion-dollar railway upgrade of Cambodia’s major freight routes, according to the Ministry of Public Works and Transportation.
“The company has already set a plan to buy 11 engine carriages, 500 freight carriages and some other train materials for their operation by the end of this year or next,” the ministry’s Secretary of State Touch Chankosal said yesterday.
He said that Toll Royal Railway was preparing to apply to the Council for Development of Cambodia requesting permission to import the locomotives; however, he said he could not confirm where the trains would be purchased.
He said that refurbishment of Cambodia’s existing trains would continue, but that the expectation was that they would not suffice.
Peter Brimble, Asian Development Bank senior country economist for Cambodia, said the main rationale for the railway upgrade, partly funded by the ADB, was to develop a more cost-effective freight system.
Touch Chankosal said it was also the first step to ease the amount of heavy transportation damaging roads.
The ADB and AusAID are providing $141 million in funding for Toll to upgrade the 254-kilometre line from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville town, a 388-kilometre line from Phnom Penh to Poipet and a 48-kilometre line from Poipet to Sisophon.
Brimble said there were no plans for the ADB to fund future railroad projects in Cambodia but that he understood a “spur” would be added to the rail line in Sihanoukville to link it to the nearby port.
Firms specialising in areas such as real estate, banking and IT are attending the three-day business fair ending today. Representatives from at least five countries – Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, China and South Korea attended.
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