Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen:
Today I have great honor and pleasure to participate in three joint events: the official opening of the 240m “Container Port”, the ground breaking ceremony to start the construction of further 160m “Container Port” and an administrative building “one stop service” using loan from JBIC, and meeting with workers and staff of the Sihanoukvile Autonomous Port to commemorate the Labor Day of 1st May 2005.
On behalf of the Royal Government of Cambodia and my own self, I congratulate you all in this commemorative event of the Labor Day here and today which remains of profound importance. This is good opportunity that I am able to meet and talk to all the 1163 staff and workers of the Sihanoukvile Port which a model organization for its best performance, and it is a successful public enterprise with high returns paid to the government budget, good management, solidarity, disciplines and orders.
Specifically, when we talk about the importance of physical infrastructure this port is the gateway of our national economy which is strategic and potential in supporting national and international trade activities of Cambodia, promoting national economic growth in the past, now and in the future.
In this sense, on behalf of the RGC and my own self, I congratulate and appreciate the management of the Ministry of Public Work and Transport (MPWT), and especially the Board of Directors, managements and staffs and workers of the Sihanoukvile Autonomous Port for their utmost efforts in producing best results every year. Indeed, all these are the contribution to reduce poverty among our population. Moreover, all our staff and workers have received appropriate benefits including the assurance on the working conditions, thus adhering to the practice of taking good care, honoring and dignifying our labor force. This is eventually the aspiration and spirit of May 1st Labor Day, and the strong commitment and policy of the Royal Government.
As H.E. Minister of MPWT has reported, this commemoration of Labor Day today follows the completion of the construction of 240m container port with the first installment loan from JBIC, while the second phase started in constructing another 160m container port and an administrative building in order to provide a quick, low cost and quality service to our clients and effectively compete with other international ports in regions and the world.
I am sure your efforts in developing the port and ensuring the effective work and operation using modern technology will definitely transform this port into an international port with high standards among regional and world ports. Thus, it will indeed contribute to enhancing the credibility of Cambodia in the international arena.
The development of this modern port infrastructure has completed when Cambodia succeeded in forming a new RGC and the coronation of His Majesty Preah Bat Samdech Preah Boromoneath Norodom Sihamoni as the new King of the Kingdom of Cambodia, with pride, praise and attention from national and international communities who highly appreciate that the Cambodia is indeed politically stable and peaceful.
These prideful results have enhanced the confidence of national and international communities on Cambodia, thus providing ample opportunity to attract foreign investments and tourists to Cambodia. All these are important as they generate employment and increase income for our Cambodian workers, and especially contribute to poverty reduction and increasing welfare of our people.
I would indicate that the development of this port including the human resource, management and working style and the furnishing new machineries will help promote good out-turns that corresponding to the government effort in rehabilitation and development of infrastructure to connect the existing and missing links across the country, especially linking the remote northeastern region to the southwestern region, the seaport here. This indeed helps accelerate integration of Cambodia into the region and the world, thus fast-tracking the poverty reduction among Cambodian population. All these include the use of private investments, foreign grants and loans to maintain the National Road 4, the rehabilitation of National Road 3 from Veal Rinh to Trapaing Rapove that will be completed in June this year. Moreover, the improvement of this road from Trapaing Rapove to Kampot, implemented with concessional loan from ROK, has completed 18%, while the improvement of paved road number 48 from Koh Kong linked to NR4 has completed 16% of work.
On behalf of the RGC and my own self, I highly appreciate and fully support all the initiatives in continuing the development of this Sihanoukvile Port. This includes the construction of 160 meters additional container-loading pier and 265 meters extra pier which equip with state-of-art Gantry Cranes, and an IT-equipped one-stop-service building where is capable to increase efficiency of the work. Those equipments not only facilitate container loading, but also reduce paper works, time and illicit costs. Taking this opportunity, I would like to extend my thanks to Japanese Government that responsively enacted the 2nd-phase of the concessional loan from JBIC for this construction site that we are going to open shortly. Also, I would like to convey my deep gratitude to Japanese government via JICA that support a study on Phnom Penh-Sihanouk Ville Corridor Development Project in order to promote and facilitate the development of industrial zone.
Moreover, I highly appreciate the hard works and efforts of CDC, relevance institutions, and local authority for their cooperation to timely implement the development project on the areas of 50 hectares next to the port. The project will provide benefit to Cambodia economy, because it not only expands activities of Sihanouk Ville Port and plays as an attractive place for foreign direct investment, but also facilitate international flow of goods in convenient, timely and efficient manner. Nevertheless, the project will generate more employment for Cambodian youth and workers as well as absorb more national and international investors.
Within the spirit of prideful achievements that we have work hard together to attain and the optimism for the future of Cambodia, I would like to appeal to managements, civil servants, employees and workers of the port to exert more efforts to express our willingness, capacity and efficiency of our work to national and international communities to transform the port to be the one that really serve international trade. I would like to ask for all relevant agencies and units to increase their cooperation and closely coordination in transparent and efficient manner in order to improve the service management system at all levels.
Indeed, showing the willingness, capacity, and efficiency in our work is essential to instill more confidence to customers, national and international investors, and donor community on our commitment in building and developing the nation.
At the same time, on behalf of Royal Government and Cambodian people, I would not forget to extend my thanks to governments, people and development agencies who constantly support us mentally, materially and in terms of budget for causes of nation unity, rehabilitation, and development of Cambodia economy via rehabilitation and construction of transportation infrastructure that are the key for economic growth and poverty reduction.
I appreciate and encourage the managements, civil servants, employees, and workers of Sihanouk Ville Autonomous Port, local authority, and all relevant institutions who put utmost effort to successfully implement strategic plan that has been adopted by the Royal Government in order to promote trade sector through development of seaport transport and related infrastructure.
I would like to congratulate and appreciate PENTA OCEAN and ITALIAN THAI JV, who will implement this port expansion project and Pacific Consultants International, which is technical supervisory agency for their active work towards successfully achieving the specific planned objective.
Before closing, I would like to dedicate the spirit of International Labor Day, 1st May, to be a day of friendship, unity, equity, brotherhood and development for all Cambodian people in the prosperous future and for next generations.
Finally, I wish All the Employees, Ladies and Gentlemen the five gems of Buddhist blessing.
I would like to officially declare the inauguration of the 240m container-loading dock and the opening of construction site for additional 160m container port, including an administrative one-stop-service building since now onwards.