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Vietnamese electricity begins flowing into Cambodian capital

May 12, 2009 - Xinhua

The power line connecting Vietnam and Cambodian capital Phnom Penh went live last Friday, increasing the energy supply to the city, local media reported on Tuesday.

In about two mouths, the connection will be piping in 200 megawatts, doubling the current capacity of the capital, the Cambodia Daily quoted Ith Praing, secretary of state for the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy, as saying.

At present only a small cable is linking Phnom Penh with the line to Vietnam, limiting the amount of power that can flow through the connection, he said.

The blackouts that have plagued Phnom Penh for decades will be greatly reduced once the power starts flowing at full capacity, said Ith Praing. At present, about 20 percent of Phnom Penh experiences blackouts every day, according to state-run utility Electricite du Cambodge.

The business community here has long cited blackouts and high electricity prices as obstacles for attracting investment. Meanwhile, municipal Deputy Governor Mann Chhoeun said that though more electricity is a definite plus, Cambodia still needs more domestically produced power.