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The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:02 am
by The Whisperer
ONE EXAMPLE:
Article from business-and-finance/chinese-sign-for-b ... 28496.html

Two big Chinese companies have teamed up to invest billions of dollars to develop an international tourism on a 3,300 hectares site near Sihanoukville.
On April 24, 2019, at Le Royal Hotel, Chong Singing Co., Ltd (CITIC). and Yi Giay Thie Zhi Development Co., Ltd. (YEEJIA) signed a new investment cooperation agreement called “Sihanoukville – Gold Beach” on a land area of ​​3,300 Ha in the Ream National Park, Preah Sihanouk Province.

The total investment capital of the new city has not yet been issued, but according to YANG Jianping, CEO of the company, his side plans to invest billions of dollars for the new project.

Mr. YANG Jianping, CEO said: “Yi Giay Thien Zim Development Co., Ltd has concessions for the construction on 3,300 hectares located in Sihanoukville’s Ream National Park. The new investment project “Sihanouk New City Golden-Silver Gulf” is supported by the Royal Government of Cambodia.

YANG added that the new city will have a conference center, health and medical care center, China Yuan payment center and financial systems for the 5G era, global online training and other training facilities, basic education facilities, hotels and intelligent buildings.
He said that the company plans to cooperate with Sihanoukville International Airport in setting up a free trade area on duty-free products and duty-free technology.

He added that the infrastructure to be built in the new city includes roads and drainage systems, nearly 100 kilometers of power cables, underwater, seashore and optical cable, a sewage treatment plant, port and other important infrastructures.
The CEO noted that the signing of this demonstrates the project will grow from the land to shape the city, develop a new economy towards a modern and international era.
The Minister of Tourism said that the development project is part of a response to One Belt One Road, an initiative of the Chinese government’s winning win-win policy framework to promote multi-national economic and tourism developments along the new Silk Road, with a successful tourism product attractive for local and foreign tourists, especially Chinese tourists in the near future.

Siem Reap, the town I lived in for almost 6 years, is almost unrecognizable from when I moved there. Saying that, there has been some really good development especially along riverside which is now very beautiful.
As I live don't live "down south" just wondered what are your thoughts?

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:17 am
by joelightcloud
As someone that has lived here since 2003 I find it all very sad. I'm in Phnom Penh and its now completely lost its charm, I see people posting that they want to move here for the first time. They are too late, its gone!

I'm still here though and that's because as in general the Khmer are still the warmest, friendliest and gentlest of all South East Asians but I am losing the passion. This saddens me also as Cambodia is a country I fell deeply in love with 16 years ago. And for that reason my heart wants to remain. I do believe things are going to get worse in the short term but I also believe in the long term things will be better so its about if I want to see it through or not and wait to see what the charm will ultimately be replaced with, the jury is still out on that one. I don't like Myanmar or Vietnam so much, Lao is boring, Thailand is spoiled and the Philippines is a dump so where to go?

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:19 am
by xandreu
All major towns and cities around the world were little fishing villages or sparsely populated regions at one time. And I'm sure there was strong opposition to them being developed at the time, but now, nobody gives a shit about it.

I'm sure that in 10 - 20 years time, people will care about what Sihanoukville used to look like as much as they do Bangkok, Pattaya, Shanghai, New York or London.

For all the cynicism of Chinese investment, (some quite rightly justified), at least it's bringing one of the poorest countries in the world into the modern era, and if they can create a thriving tourism industry out of it, why not?

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:37 am
by The Whisperer
joelightcloud wrote: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:17 am As someone that has lived here since 2003 I find it all very sad. I'm in Phnom Penh and its now completely lost its charm, I see people posting that they want to move here for the first time. They are too late, its gone!

I'm still here though and that's because as in general the Khmer are still the warmest, friendliest and gentlest of all South East Asians but I am losing the passion. This saddens me also as Cambodia is a country I fell deeply in love with 16 years ago. And for that reason my heart wants to remain. I do believe things are going to get worse in the short term but I also believe in the long term things will be better so its about if I want to see it through or not and wait to see what the charm will ultimately be replaced with, the jury is still out on that one. I don't like Myanmar or Vietnam so much, Lao is boring, Thailand is spoiled and the Philippines is a dump so where to go?
I completely agree with your comments.

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:53 am
by clutchcargo
xandreu wrote: Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:19 am All major towns and cities around the world were little fishing villages or sparsely populated regions at one time. And I'm sure there was strong opposition to them being developed at the time, but now, nobody gives a shit about it.

I'm sure that in 10 - 20 years time, people will care about what Sihanoukville used to look like as much as they do Bangkok, Pattaya, Shanghai, New York or London.

For all the cynicism of Chinese investment, (some quite rightly justified), at least it's bringing one of the poorest countries in the world into the modern era, and if they can create a thriving tourism industry out of it, why not?
Agree with the gist of your point that you can't stop development.

However what makes Sihanoukville different in my mind tho is that it's being developed to cater exclusively for the Chinese. Other nationalities are turning away and not going there now because of that. I recall when Pattaya had its West German wave, then it was the Russians and now the Chinese but through it all, the place was always a mix catering for all ethnic types and nationalities.

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 5:53 pm
by clutchcargo
Mind you, Air Asia will have you think otherwise.. :facepalm:

Image

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 6:39 pm
by Anchor Moy
Personally, what took me unawares in SHV was the SPEED of the change. I was on Cambodia-time where any change may take a long time, and quite often, constructions are announced but never happen. Then the Chinese arrived and got to work and in two years they have built cities out of nowhere. Fair play to them, and they got the green light from the Cambodian authorities.
All that to say that I think the speed of the development in Sihanoukville, as well as the lack of transparency by the government, explains some of the anti-Chinese sentiment from both foreigners and Khmers. Just suddenly, out of nowhere, a Khmer seaside town becomes a Chinese casino town, and there's no place for those who don't fit in. Bye bye. :wave:

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 8:55 pm
by frank lee bent
they have run the Khmers out of their own town.
when they tried it in Vietnam 4 years ago, they got burned out and 80,000 had to flee for their lives in a weekend.
For all the cynicism of Chinese investment, (some quite rightly justified), at least it's bringing one of the poorest countries in the world into the modern era,and if they can create a thriving tourism industry out of it, why not?
I gather you do not follow the news. Here is a typical picture of the town now, where rubbish has not been collected for months.
Image


your assertion is absurd.

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Fri Apr 26, 2019 11:57 pm
by Anchor Moy
Most people who comment positively on the outcome at Sihanoukville have not been there recently. The speed of change is startling, but as FLB says, they are not keeping up things like rubbish collection, so the place is a big dump. I heard they can't get enough garbage workers because working conditions are bad, and also they don't have enough trucks to keep up. The rubbish piles up so much, that when the truck finally comes around it cannot pick up more than the rubbish from one street before it has to go and unload. Chronic.
This means that the streets are dirty and smelly, it encourages rats, and there is waste water lying around everywhere for mosquito infestation.

However, this general breakdown in services is not the fault of the residents - Khmer or Chinese. It is the fault of the city authorities, and the Chinese businesses and construction sites who don't give a damn where their waste ends up, because there is nobody holding them to account and they are not paying their share. If the authorities ordered the Chinese businesses to all pay for a cleanup then things might change.

Re: The changing face of Cambodia

Posted: Sat Apr 27, 2019 6:54 am
by JerryCan
Not saying there aren't issues in SHV, but I wanted to just chime in and say that the casinos are the front page issues and that the progress and change that has been brought to the other parts of Cambodia in terms of businesses, (some) infrastructure, and dare I say law and order have been much welcome.

If you just got to Cambodia a few years ago then it might seem like a corrupt shit heap, and it is of course, but if you can remember the days before HE was in charge, or even just 10-15 years ago, then this place truly has changed for the better in many ways. Roads are better, power is better (even with the power cuts, it's not like we're in the dark ages, we've only gone back to 2007), markets are better, product selection is better, long distance bus travel is better, hell, there's even flights from SHV to Phnom Penh now...

So while I'm no fan of the Chinese (even though I married into a Chinese Khmer family), without them, the country wouldn't be on track to changing for the better. As much as other countries poured into the coffers of the piggies up top, it only bought a handful of Land Cruisers and Range Rovers and left those at the bottom scraping for scraps as usual so I don't know about you, but I realise that while my attitude to better a country and ideas would not have included attracting the gambling crowd and fast money type to invest in the country, I have to say it's probably been for the best.

We can always think of things to complain about, but truth be told, life really is getting better for the masses here.

(Hope that tone was a positive one, because had a long day yesterday and my language may not reflect positivity).