Nearly 9,000 vehicles traveled on Cambodia’s first-ever expressway on the first day of its opening for trial use on Saturday, the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) said in a news release on Sunday.“From 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. (local time) on Saturday, 8,927 vehicles were on the Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway, entering and exiting through all eight stations,” the MPWT said.
Both private cars and cargo trucks were seen traveling on the freeway, it added.
“This proves that the expressway is indeed a potential economic route,” the MPWT said.
The Chinese-invested Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway was opened to the public on Saturday for a month’s free-of-charge trial after more than three years of construction.
Invested by the China Road and Bridge Corporation, the 2-billion-U.S. dollar expressway with a total length of 187 km connects the capital Phnom Penh and the deep-sea port province of Preah Sihanouk.
With two lanes for traffic in each direction plus an emergency lane on each side and paved with asphalt concrete, vehicles will be able to reach their destination in about two hours on the expressway, instead of five hours on National Road 4.
Cambodian Ministry of Commerce’s Undersecretary of State Penn Sovicheat said the expressway is crucial to help boost economic growth, saving travel time and reducing logistics costs.