PHNOM PENH, June 11 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia on Monday inaugurated the 251-km section of the China-funded national road No. 6 from southeastern Kampong Cham province to northwestern Siem Reap province.
Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen and Chinese Ambassador to Cambodia Xiong Bo presided over the inauguration ceremony that was attended by more than 10,000 people who are government officials, local authorities, residents and students.
Hun Sen said the national road No. 6 played a vital role for tourism development and trade activity since it connected capital Phnom Penh to Siem Reap province, the home of Angkor world heritage site.
"The Chinese friend has helped construct our internal transport infrastructure very well," the prime minister said.
He expressed his profound thanks to the government and people of China for having provided a great amount of grant aid and concessional loan to Cambodia for socio-economic development.
Meanwhile, the prime minister said China's growth and development has not only benefited China itself, but also helped develop many countries around the world.
He said under the Belt and Road Initiative, China has provided the larger amount of concessional loans to other countries, including Cambodia, for the implementation of projects.
"Cambodia has also got benefits from this Belt and Road Initiative," he said.
Xiong expressed his belief that the road will play an important role in contributing to socio-economic development and poverty reduction in Cambodia.
He said China will always support Cambodia for choosing its own development path that meets the national conditions.
Cambodian Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol said the reconstruction of the national road's section cost 255 million U.S. dollars in which 95 percent of the budget was a concessional loan from the Chinese government and the remaining 5 percent was covered by the Cambodian government.
He said the road was constructed by the Shanghai Construction Group in a period of four years and two months.
To date, 23 roads in a total length of 2,301 km have been constructed under China's loan and grant, while seven other roads in the length of 735 km are being built with the China's funding, according to the Ministry of Public Works and Transport.
Besides, seven large bridges with a total length of 6.8 km had already been constructed under the China's concessional loan.