A Sleepin City Has Awaken

in #blog2 years ago

Hi Steem friends!

I want to write something about the changes in Cambodia that I have experienced. For over 2,5 years I worked and lived on the island Koh Rong 30 km outside the coast of Sihanoukville.

This city of Cambodia, is no longer a sleepy, undeveloped town for backpackers.The rapid transformation that this town is going through is beyond. The impact social and environmental just cannot longer be ignored. I was there at the beginning when it all started to happen. At first there was just a couple of casino's.
But now the whole city is under construction, with cement trucks running up and down the roads. The huge cranes across the whole city to create huge buildings one after the other at a very fast speed, the city has changed unrecognizably into a construction and casino boom town.

The thing is that the infrastructure of Sihanoukville(whole Cambodia) can
not handle the abrupt massiv development and is now anything but a livable city. It is dusty in the dry season and muddy in the rainy season, with bumpy, unfinished and unpaved roads because of the development and it's not only the infrastructure it's also about the waste management, sewage and the water supply that has now become the biggest problem for the city simple fact of lack of capicity.

The negative effects of all this has also get the attention of even the Chinese embassy in Cambodia, which pleads for ensure the positive image of Chinese contribution to Cambodia’s development.

Not so long ago when I was in Sihanoukville for a meeting I couldn't believe my eyes all the signboards are mostly in red, with Chinese letters all over.

If you go to the beach, there is no sufficient infrastructure, no affordable hotels, guesthouses, and Khmer restaurants anymore. They are all Chinese. Even now the Cambodians can not enjoy their holidays and festivities here because it's too expensive.

Other than the benefit from rental fees and real estate speculation, which is only for a few number of Cambodian people with have access to property, there are no success stories wherein the locals can benefit from the massive investment projects.

If you walk around the city you can see with your own eyes how the Chinese are dominating the local economy even in small grocery shops, hair salons, street food, and health clinics.

While the Chinese has waking up the sleeping town, the process has been left to the mercy of the free market economy but without good management and a clear projection of Cambodian vision, the free market economy can also turn into the hand of the devil at the cost of local people’s interest.

I hope that the city will work to ensure that more public space can be enjoyed by local people with proper supporting facilities such as affordable hotels and Khmer restaurants.

Please upvote if you like this post.
Thank you all and have a great weekend!

Posted using Partiko Android

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