Cambodia’s Sihanoukville int’l airport’s runway expansion completed hinh anh 1At Sihanouk International Airport (Photo: Cambodia Airports) 
Phnom Penh (VNA) - Cambodia Airports, the developer and operator of the country’s three international airports, has said it had completed the runway expansion and renovation at Sihanouk International Airport as part of its post-COVID-19 era business expansion plans.

It extended the 2,500m runway by 800m, reinforced the current airstrip and installed an LED airfield lighting system to reduce its carbon footprint, The Phnom Penh Post newspaper quoted the company’s statement as saying.

The runway is now a 58 million USD investment programme and is scheduled to be commissioned in the last quarter of this year, the company said.

The project was launched in July 2018 and aims at accommodating larger aircraft such as B-777-300ER or A-350-1000 operating long-haul direct flights to/from Sihanouk International Airport, according to Cambodia Airports.

Its CEO Alain Brun said upgrading the runway was crucial to enable more direct long-haul flights into the southwestern coastal province of Preah Sihanouk, where Sihanoukville is located.

Cambodia Airports communications and public relations director Khek Norinda said the runway will be operational in the weeks ahead.

In September, the airport handled about 20 weekly inbound and outbound flights, a more than 95 percent nosedive compared to the same period last year.

The scheduled flights connect the airport to Phnom Penh and Siem Reap town of Cambodia, and some Chinese cities.

According to Cambodia Airports, the airport has experienced triple digit growth nearly every year with annual passenger traffic soaring from 94,000 to more than 1.6 million between 2015 and last year. The number of passengers grew by a whopping 158 percent last year from 2018.

In the last five years, Sihanoukville has become a destination in the making with its deep-sea port and pristine beaches, attracting both business investors and tourists./.