First half of 2018 sees 1.3M vis­i­tors

The Phnom Penh Post - - BUSINESS -

THE Preah Si­hanouk pro­vin­cial Depart­ment of Tourism says Preah Si­hanouk prov­ince re­ceived more than 1.3 mil­lion tourists dur­ing the first se­mes­ter of this year.

Of this, over one mil­lion were do­mes­tic tourists and 290,782 for­eign, with Chi­nese ac­count­ing for 84,664 – up 10.12 per cent com­pared to the same pe­riod last year.

How­ever, the beaches in the prov­ince – once re­garded as some of the world’s most beau­ti­ful – have been lit­tered by on­go­ing de­vel­op­ment projects in re­cent years.

A sig­nif­i­cant in­flux of Chi­nese tourists and in­vestors to Si­hanoukville has left it rife with con­struc­tion sites, bring­ing with it con­se­quences that could leave a neg­a­tive im­pact on the tourism in­dus­try as a whole.

To ad­dress this, Min­is­ter of Tourism Thong Khon met pro­vin­cial au­thor­i­ties and other stake­hold­ers on Mon­day to ex­plore ways to ad­dress some of the chal­lenges fac­ing tourism de­vel­op­ment in the prov­ince.

Khon said the chal­lenges in Si­hanoukville, in­clud­ing se­cu­rity, en­vi­ron­ment, in­fra­struc­ture, and tourism ser­vices man­age­ment, have eroded the area’s pop­u­lar­ity.

Khon has told the au­thor­i­ties to man­age trash ef­fec­tively and pre­vent dirty wa­ter from flow­ing into the sea.

Re­cently, pri­vate com­pa­nies were caught fill­ing Praek Treng beach, caus­ing pub­lic ou­trage. Af­ter crit­i­cism, the gov­ern­ment or­dered the au­thor­i­ties to re­move the land­fill.

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