Local and foreign experts and government officials gathered at Sofitel Phnom Penh to discuss about urban development in the Kingdom, sought new solutions to the challenges caused by rapid urban growth.
Pauline Tamesis, United Nations resident coordinator, said that managed urbanization can accelerate Cambodia’s transformation into a high-income country by 2050. She further pointed out that Cambodia has one of the fastest rates of urbanisation in Southeast Asia.
By 2030, it is estimated that one in three people in Cambodia will live in cities. By 2050, the current urban population is expected to double, surpassing 9 million people.
According to Pen Sophal, secretary of state at the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning, and Construction, the authority is working on a law on land management and urban planning to regulate the development of the real estate and construction sectors.
Growth in the real estate and construction sectors has risen dramatically in the last few years, and these sectors have become major economic drivers. Investment in construction had reached USD 24 billion during the last five years.
He added that, the cities generate around 50 percent of the GDP. However, growing cities also put increased pressure on infrastructure, land and services, which may make it less livable for those left behind. Unplanned urbanization often leads to precarious informal living conditions.