Two Chinese shipping giants are likely to sign agreements with Cambodia's Sihanoukville Autonomous Port (SAP), paving the way for exporters to move cargo directly from Cambodia to China, a local newspaper reported Wednesday, citing a senior port official.
Lou Kimchhun, director general of SAP, said that a rise in the kingdom's exports had drawn the attention of marine freight companies China Shipping Container Lines and China Ocean Shipping Group Company (COSCO), according to the Phnom Penh Post.
China Shipping Container Lines and COSCO are among the world's largest freight transport firms that ship from Cambodia, together shipping more than 1.2 million standard twenty-foot containers annually.
Once the agreements are reached, the two shipping giants will be the first to link Cambodia directly with the world's second- largest economy, avoiding the stopover at Vietnam's Cai Mep port in shipping, Kimchhun added.
"Very soon, we will have the direct shipment from our country to China without going through Vietnam as we will reach agreement with China Shipping Lines within the next few weeks while the COSCO will reach the agreement later because we need further talks, " the newspaper quoted him as saying.
"It will definitely benefit a lot of traders which have business with Chinese counterparts. Moreover, it will not only help our exporters for exporting directly to China, but also to other destinations with a more competitive fee," he added.