Cambodia promotes law to thousands of construction professionals after recent building collapse

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, January 15, 2020
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PHNOM PENH, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia on Tuesday promoted the Law on Construction to about 3,000 contractors, engineers and architects after a six-story building collapsed earlier this month, leaving 36 people dead and 23 others injured.

Addressing the event here, Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Chea Sophara called on all construction professionals to comply with building technical regulations in order to ensure construction quality, security and safety.

"Ensuring that the buildings are safe for owners, users and the public is the most important thing, so it's essential for contractors, engineers and architects to mainly focus on construction quality," he said.

Sophara, who is also a deputy prime minister, said construction projects without a valid permit must be banned, and contractors that do not hold ministry-issued licenses must also be prohibited from undertaking construction work.

Construction of buildings without the onsite supervision of engineers is also banned, he said, adding that if violated, a letter for the immediate suspension of construction will be issued, and in case of repeated violation, the authorities will bring the case to court for next legal action.

Theng Chansangvar, a secretary of state for the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, said under the recently-adopted Law on Construction, anyone who conducts construction business without a permit and causes the death of a person(s) will be imprisoned from seven to 15 years.

The dissemination of the law came after a six-story guesthouse building, that was under construction, collapsed on Jan. 3 in Kep city in southwestern Kep province, leaving 36 people dead and 23 others wounded. A contractor responsible for the construction project was also killed in the collapse.

Shoddy construction, including the use of poor quality cement and small-sized steel bars, was blamed for the incident.

Construction is one of the four pillars supporting Cambodia's economy, and the Southeast Asian nation has seen a construction boom in recent years.

According to a government report, the kingdom's construction sector attracted a total investment of 9.35 billion U.S. dollars in 2019, up 79 percent from 5.22 billion dollars in 2018.

The country currently has 1,624 high-rise buildings (between five and 54 floors) and 298 locations of new towns and residential complexes, most of them are located in Phnom Penh, capital of Cambodia. Enditem

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