The opening of a new international border between Cambodia and Thailand is expected to further enhance trade and tourism cooperation between the two countries.
Experts believe that the opening of Thmar Da International Border will open up a special economic zone through domestic and international travels besides enabling trading between the two countries. Thmar Da International Border is located in Thmar Da Commune, Veal Veng District, Pursat Province, bordering Trat Province, Thailand.
Already Thmar Da has invested in housing development, hotels, markets, casinos and resorts that leverage on its 1,500 scenic waterfalls and mountains.
The Trat province in Thailand is also known to be a seaside tourist attraction.
Plans are in the pipeline for various infrastructures to be constructed including the immigration, customs and excise buildings housing both the administrative and dormitory facilities, as well as parking lots, warehouses and container fields.
In a recent Technical Working Group meeting of the Ministry of Public Works and Transport, Sun Chanthol, the Minister of Public Works and Transport who reviewed the construction said the project would provide opportunities for expanded international cooperation, investment, cross-border trade, creating jobs and attracting tourists aim to boost the economy, families and societies of both countries.
The Public Works and Transport Ministry spokesman Heang Sothearyuth told Khmer Times that the ministry is prepared to outline detailed procedures in opening up international borders with the Thai government.
“This border gate will be a playing vital role in the exchange of goods between both countries. It is geographically favourable for transportation between districts and provinces such as Somlot, Battambang Koh Kong and Sihanoukville.
“The construction of National Road 55 has already been completed but National Road 10 is still under construction. Both national roads are undertaken by a Chinese company,” he said, adding that the addition of an international border will help expedite the transportation of agricultural produce and goods besides boosting tourism there.
The bilateral trade between Cambodia and Thailand was valued at $7.97 billion last year, a 10.26 percent increase compared to the previous year.
The Kingdom imported over $7 billion worth of goods from its neighbouring country, which saw a yearly average increase of 16.37 percent.
Cambodia’s main exports to Thailand include textiles, agricultural products, gems, raw materials and semi-finished products.
Imports from Thailand agricultural produce, automobiles, organic fertilisers, foodstuff and construction materials.
Heang said that the barriers faced in the export of agricultural products to Thailand have always been sanitary and phytosanitary requirements.
The two countries, he said, harbour high hopes to continue pushing for increased bilateral trades up to $15 billion by 2023.