Maersk Line and the intra-Asia container shipping specialist, MCC Transport, celebrated their 20 years of business co-operation in Cambodia with a major celebration in Phnom Penh attended by Public Works and Transport Minister Tram Iv Tek and Danish Commercial Councillor Asbjorn Overgaard Christiansen.
Maersk Line country manager Benjamin Wilson explains how Maersk’s return to Cambodia came in the wake of the UN-led transition to democracy in 1992 which led to a representative office being set up in 1993.
“Our vessel calls in the early 1990s carried only a handful of containers, consisting of essential imports to help rebuild the country as it started opening up. Today, Maersk Line and MCC Transport bring in and take out over 2,000 containers each week through the ports in Sihanoukville and Phnom Penh,” Benjamin Wilson states.
One in every three containers in and out of Cambodia is today handled by Maersk Line and MCC Transport.
Import volumes have traditionally been higher than exports for Cambodia, but this trend is set to change in the coming years as the country’s manufacturing and agricultural production continue to grow at a fast pace. Garments, footwear and agricultural products are principal exports.
“Exports have been growing 20 per cent year on year and we expect to see continued strong growth. Cambodia has several competitive advantages over its neighbouring countries, such as its young and low-cost labour force,” Mr Wilson said.
Although Maersk and MCC only set up their representative office in 1993, Maersk had vessels calling from the mid 1950s to the mid 1970s before the Khmer Rouge came to power.
“Our services allow Cambodian products to be sold across the globe. Rice, grown in paddy fields by Cambodian farmers, milled in Cambodian mills is being enjoyed by consumers from Africa to Europe,” said Mr Wilson.
Pictures from the celebration on Wednesday 27 November 2013 at the Intercontinental Hotel are from the website of the Royal Danish Embassy in Bangkok.