Your Excellencies Senators, Members of the Parliament, and Members of the Royal Government,
Your Excellency Masafumi KUROKI, Japan’s Ambassador to the Kingdom of Cambodia,
Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen distinguished national and international guests,
Dear the compatriots,
It is my pleasure to be here once again to inaugurate the 9.10-Km segment of the National Road No. 1, from Veal Sbov – Phnom Penh to Koki – Kiensvay, which is built using the grant provided by the Government of Japan. On behalf of the Royal Government and people of Cambodia, I would like to take this opportunity to extend my deep gratitude through H.E. Masafumi KUROKI to the Government and the people of Japan, Cambodia’s most important development partner that has always provided invaluable financial and technical assistances, either in the form of grants or concessional loans, to build peace and national unity and to restore and develop physical infrastructure, especially national roads, Phnom Penh Port, Sihanouk Port and so forth. Moreover, Japan has also provided assistance in the field of human resource development through the funding of scholarships for students, government officials, and members of the public to study in Japan. In spite of the devastation caused by the recent Tsunami, Japan still continue to provide assistances to underpin Cambodia’s pursuit of socio-economic development. This, without doubt, indicates Japan’s priceless support for Cambodia’s economic development and poverty reduction.
The people and Royal Government of Cambodia have always remembered the early grants provided by Japan. The products of these grants include many main roads and bridges such as the Chroy Changvar Japan-Cambodia Friendship Bridge, a segment of the national road No. 6 from Rorluos to Siemreap, the national road No. 6A, national road No. 7 to Thnol Torteung, many bridges along these roads, especially Kizuna Bridge. Moreover, two bridges along the national road No. 1 in Samrong Thom Commune, Kiensvay District, Kandal Provinces were inaugurated in 2005 during the first phase of the construction from Phnom Penh to western part of Neak Loeung. The second phase was the construction of the 42.88-Km segment from Kilometer 13 in Korki – Kiensvay to the western part of Neak Loeung which was inaugurated on January 5, 2010. By mid-2014, we will have another landmark, hi-tech and enormous bridge at Neak Loeung. Currently, we have completed 6.6% of the construction of this bridge. Besides, the construction of the 9.10 – Km segment from Kilometer No. 4, Veal Sbov – Phnom Penh to Kilometer No. 13, Korki – Kiensvay is the third phase of the work to enlarge the road to ensure unstopped domestic and regional transport in all seasons.
I think the achievement reflects that Cambodia is on track to attain prosperity, development and happiness in the face of the era of globalization and advancement of IT and telecommunication. All these achievements have been made possible by the complete peace which stems from the termination of the political and military structure of the Pol Pot Regime, thanks to Royal Government’s win-win policy. This great achievement is an indispensable prerequisite, and very significant for developing all sectors of Cambodia.
Truly, many merits of bridges and a portion of national road no. 1, from Phnom Penh to Neak Leung, provide advantages and make a comprehensive contribution to the socio-economic development of Cambodia because this portion of national road no. 1 serves very busy traffics. Indeed, at present the transportation crossing the borders between Cambodia-Vietnam, serving the activities of commerce, service, health and tourism between the two countries, are mostly done through this road. For instance, Vietnamese tourists are ranked highly among foreign tourists in terms of number coming to visit Angkor Temple in Siem Reap, most of those tourists have travelled through this national road no. 1. In addition, this road has also served as a crossing area for the travel and transportation of goods from Bangkok, Thailand, to Hochiminh Vietnam within the framework of ASEAN Highway no. 1, which is determined by the ASEAN Community and countries in the Greater Mekong Sub-region.
In parallel, this portion of the road is passing through areas next to the royal capital Phnom Penh that are crowded with people, and low-lying areas along the Mekong River that is flooded in rainy season. This aspect has made these areas rich with fertile land, allowing multi-type agriculture productions and giving very good yields. Hence, this road provides a good means for the transportation of people’s agricultural harvests to markets in Phnom Penh, other provinces and Vietnam. Moreover, Mekong River, located on one side of this road, is a navigable waterway from Vietnam and sandwiched by big factories and enterprises along the river; in particular the international standard port that is a new location of Phnom Penh port, presently is under construction and expected to be completed in 2012. Furthermore, when the Neak Leung Bridge is completed national road no. 1 will have more potential in a role as a road for ASEAN Highway of Greater Mekong Sub-region and ASEAN Highway no. 1. At the same time, based on construction techniques and geography of this area we can see that lifting up the level of the road can serve as a dam, preventing rainwater from eroding the ground and floods in rainy season as well. For example, the use of new technology can prevent water from eroding the base of the road and make this important road durable, so that it ensures the flow of domestic and international transport traffics can operate in all seasons. On top of that, this road can play a role as makeshift settlements for people and animals while their houses are heavily flooded because we have built special parks in front of markets, schools and hospitals that would facilitate and ensure the safety and traffics of our people and students. I have a firm belief that a portion of national road no.1 along with all other infrastructure that we have so far completed are means that can most effectively contribute to the enhancement of the livelihoods of our people out of poverty, prevent traffic accidents, and promote the economic growth and cooperation in the region too.
Apart from that, the completion of construction of a portion of national road no.1 from Kilometer No.4 to Kilometer No.13 at Korki Kian Svay is a complement on the effectiveness of national road no.1, which is an important vessel for improving the capacity of socio-economy of Cambodia and ensuring the busy passing transport traffics in the region and Greater Mekong Sub-region. That can bring in more national revenue and create plenty more of job and work opportunities for people to increase their incomes, enhance their family livelihoods, improve their education and the welfare of the people. In parallel to the economic effectiveness, this road has also vitally contributed to solving the continuous increases in traffic jams caused by steady increases in all kinds of cars and hustling and bustling of national and international business activities as well as the growth of many factories and enterprises and tourist activities that require passing travelling and transports from Phnom Penh to Bavit, Svay Rieng province, the borders of Cambodia-Vietnam. In addition, a portion of national road no.1 from Phnom Penh to Neak Leung has effectively and timely responded to the implementation of cross-border transport accord between Cambodia and Vietnam. This portion of the road has played an important role with important potential for fulfilling the needs in accelerating the economic growth and development of the entire nation through the internal, regional and global integrations. This aspect will allow Cambodia to increase opportunities for herself in seizing the benefits from comparative advantage in commerce business, industry, agriculture, and tourism, and to create preferential conditions toward the promotion of development of key foundations for other sectors such as education, health, security, national defense and development along the borders of Cambodia-Vietnam, and that would turn these areas to areas with progress on all sectors and good cooperation, border crisis and contribution to the harmony of all nations in Greater Mekong Sub-region and ASEAN Community.
In a similar regard, the construction of this portion of national road no.1 is a bridge linking provinces on the East side of Mekong River to provinces on South-West of the country through the connection of national road no.1 to national road no.2 along the linked track from both ends and body of Takhmao bridge, which can be linked in a short distance to the Southern areas of Vietnam through national road no.2 toward the Cambodia-Vietnam border gate in Phnom Din. This potential is still in the planning process because a portion of national road from Eastern end of Monivong Bridge to Veal Sbov KiloMet No.4, 4 Kilometers in distance, cannot be developed yet as Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) of Japan needs to conduct a thorough study on this project. Based on technical aspect, this road is required to have 4 lanes. The development of this portion will negatively affect many residential areas and settlements of people in the area, and thus we necessarily need to pay great attention and conduct a study in detail in order to make sure this road, after the completion, meet the appropriate standard and technique, looking good as well as receive support from the people, and cause no one to lose from the development of this portion of the road.
Technically, this is a 4-lane road. This will affect housing of the people dwelling there that we must pay attention and conduct detailed study in order to ensure that this road, once completed, will meet technical standard, be beautiful, and receive support from all the people. And it will be ensured that no anybody will suffer loss from the development of this link.
The government always gives high priorities to development of physical infrastructure such as water, electricity, road and bridge, because we still needs more infrastructure in order to ensure full nation-wide integration and ascertain that cambodian people of every place will be provided same opportunity in national socio-economic development and all the people will benefit from this development process. Indeed, the government is actively working in area of rehabilitation and development of railroad, water and land transportation infrastructure. This is one of key agenda of policy priorities that deserves further attention and promotion, in conformity to good will and platform of the government for development as clearly inscribed in The Rectangular Strategy Phase II for growth, employment, efficiency and equity. Obviously, good road-bridge are holy means to attract investors from all circles to make investment in all areas. These activities allow us generate career and employments for the people that allow them to secure income for better livelihood and escape from the poverty.
In that, the achievements that we jointly have made so far are clear evidence reflecting strong correlation between infrastructure and socio-economic development and improvement in people livelihood. In this spirit, to maintain and raise efficiency and sustainability of utilizing achievements that we have succeeded so far and optimism on our destiny, taking this opportunity, on behalf of the government, I would like to remind and appeal to all government members, all levels of local authorities, together with all the people, to join hands to preserve these infrastructures for benefit for the long time. Furthermore, I would like to encourage the management and officials of ministry of public works and transportation to further continue cooperation and effort to fulfil duties to link and maintain sustainable road networks to all areas, near and far, nation-wide and with the neighbouring countries. The Ministry of Public Work and Transportation continues cooperating closely with relevant ministries, authorities and all citizens especially the work of residential resettlement which is a necessary factor based on the respectful spirit of peoples’ benefits and societies’ advantages, and law principles of the country to enhance the construction process, road and bridge development, and good care-taking of productiveness, quality, better traffic and transportation safety to contribute enhancing economic growth as well. The good care-taking of public and private properties is a protection of our citizen people’s lives.
As traffic accident is currently the government’s issue and worry because it results in losses of people’s lives and injuries, and destroys public and private properties every year, I would like to suggest all people suggest that while they travel on smooth roads with ease and comfort, please do not forget two crucial advices: 1.Strictly comply with traffic laws by driving with right-sided obedience, speeding below 90 km per hour out of residential area and 40 km per hour in residential, fastening the seatbelts, putting on safety helmets, and not consuming alcohol while driving. 2. Do not do overloaded transportation of goods because such transporting destroys our roads and bridges which we strive to build with difficulties.
In this opportunity, I would like to appreciate the development study group of the national road number 1with thorough analyses that require us to build a station with modern equipments to control car weights at the same time with roads and bridges constructions. Two stations have been built along the road portion which one is near Tiger beer factory and the other one is 4 km away from Neak Leung ferry station. Also I would like to remind all authorities and transporters to firmly and effectively prohibit over-loaded transportation with high conscience in order to maintain the quality and effectiveness of roads and bridges with long-lasting uses.
Once again, on behalf of the Royal Government and all Cambodian people, I would like to appreciate governments and people of all friendship countries and all donating agency especially Japan which always pay great attention and mentally, materialistically, and financially show all kinds of supports in the purpose of rehabilitating and rebuilding destroyed Socio-economic during the war in the past two decades. The aids are very beneficial for all Cambodian people particularly for the improvement and development of transportation infrastructures which is a key method for stimulating economic growth, enhancing social health, and contributing reducing poverty of Cambodian people. I would like to thank, congratulate, and express my great appreciation to the hard work and endeavors of KATAHIRA Japanese company, a technical controller, and DAIHO corporation company, a project contractor of this third-term road construction which quickly finishes its project on time conformity with appropriate techniques and international standards.
At the end, with the announcement of official opening of national road number 1 portion from Veal Sbov kilometer 4 to Kor Ki kilometer 13 in Kean Svay district , Kandal province, I would like to wish venerable monks, Excellencies, ladies and gentlemen distinguished national and international guests the four gems of Buddhist blessing: Longevity, Nobility, Healthiness and Strength.