South Korea aims to help Cambodia build “Friendship Bridge” over the Mekong

The bridge is expected to relieve traffic congestion in Phnom Penh (ND Strupler/CC BY 2.0)
Cambodia and South Korea are planning to start work on a “Friendship Bridge” over the Mekong River between Phnom Penh and the largely rural Cambodian area of Arey Ksat to the east, the Khmer Times reports.

The joint project, which has been under discussion since February 2020, was mentioned by Park Heung-kyeong, South Korea’s ambassador to Cambodia, during a groundbreaking ceremony for an upgrade to National Road 48, the country’s coastal highway.

He said a South Korean company was undertaking a study of the scheme and the aim was to construct a “beautiful” bridge that would be a tourist attraction. He said: “I believe the Cambodia-Korea Friendship bridge will not only help to solve the traffic congestion problem at the centre of Phnom Penh … it will also become a tourist site attracting visitors to the capital.”

In response, Cambodian president Hun Sen thanked the South Korean government for agreeing to help Cambodia build the bridge, which he said would contribute to developments in Arey Ksat in Lvea Aem district.

A spokesperson for the Minister of Public Works and Transport told the Khmer Times, “The Korean companies are currently studying what kind of bridge to build, and how much would it cost. We expect to build the bridge by the end of this year after the studies are completed, and gets the stamp of approval from Prime Minister Hun Sen.”

At present Arey Ksat is connected to Phnom Penh by a ferry. Once the bridge is built, the area is expected to undergo rapid development.

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