Cambodia is committed to complete construction of the 6.5-kilometre cross-border railway linking Poipet town to Aranyaprathet by the year’s end.
Public Works and Transport Minister Sun Chanthol gave the assurance on Sunday when he inspected the construction site in Poipet in Banteay Meanchey province where the railway tracks from Cambodia and Thailand will meet, the Khmer Times online reported on Tuesday.
The 6.5-kilometre railway line is funded by the Asian Development Bank.
“We plan to complete this project by the end of the year and as planned it could be finished by either October or November,” Chanthol said.
According to the minister, the deadline for the project was set in a meeting between Prime Minister Hun Sen and his Thai counterpart Prayut Chan-o-cha in 2015 in efforts to boost bilateral trade to at least $15 billion by 2020.
According to the Thai embassy in Cambodia, about 70% of products imported from Thailand to Cambodia passed through Poi Pet last year.
The State Railway of Thailand is refurbishing the track from Aranyaprathet station in Sa Keo province to the border at Ban Khlong Luek, which is opposite Poipet.
Chanthol was accompanied by Thai ambassador to Cambodia Nuttavudh Photisaro in his visit to the Poipet ‒ Sisophon railway construction site.
The minister said the rail link between the two countries will be good for tourism.
“After we link [railway], tourists can travel from Singapore to Malaysia, then to Thailand, and finally to Cambodia,” Chanthol said.
The railway track between Poipet and Sisophon is part of the eastern corridor of the rail link between Singapore and China’s Kunming province that will connect the whole of Asean.