Cambodia's Apsara Authority and China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation on Thursday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the project of sustainable management of the existing resources for conservation and sustainable development in Angkor World Heritage Site and Siem Reap region.
The deal was inked between Bun Narith, director general of Apsara Authority, which protects and manages Angkor Archeological Park, and Liu Zhiming, chairman of China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, under the presence of Cambodian Deputy Prime Minister and Cabinet Minister Sok An.
"This partnership is very significant and timely as it responds to the contemporary issues of Angkor, which requires not only conservation, but also green and sustainable development," Sok An said at the signing ceremony.
He said the deal would strengthen the capacity of Apsara Authority to deal with the sustainable development in the Angkor region, especially in the region of Kulen Mountain, which is the source of water for the whole region of Siem Reap.
Kulen is also a cultural and historical site rich in the archeological remains.
Bun Narith said under the MoU, the firm would work with the Apsara Authority in order to conduct a pre-feasibility study before specific development projects are proposed.
"The Chinese company funds for the project," he said. "Such a study is essential to explore and propose the best investment options and to assess various aspects -- economic, environmental, social and cultural."
Liu Zhiming said the firm was very pleased to help Cambodia protect and preserve the Angkor World Heritage Site.
"We are willing to make our contribution to the conservation and sustainable development in Angkor World Heritage Site and Siem Reap region, and the improvement of the local livelihoods of people," he said.
Established in 1979, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation is a large, leading Chinese state-owned enterprise, he said, adding that the corporation's business activities included railway construction, project contracting, civil engineering designs and consultancy, real estate development and hotel management.
Currently, the corporation has spread its business activities in over 60 countries and regions around the globe.
The 12th century Angkor Wat Temple, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1992, is situated about 315 kilometers northwest of Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia. Last year, the site attracted 2.06 million foreign visitors, up 28 percent year-on- year.