Battambang Airport in Line for Upgrade to Receive Tourists

Battambang Airport will be upgraded to be akin to Siem Reap airport as part of plans to attract more tourists to the country
Motorists drive near temples in Siem Reap. Kiripost/Siv Channa
Motorists drive near temples in Siem Reap. Kiripost/Siv Channa

Battambang Airport will be upgraded to a 4C airport similar to its Siem Reap counterpart to draw more tourists to the country.

The government has chosen to restore and upgrade Veal Bek Chan 4C Airport in​ Battambang​​ to attract more visitors after the country's economic reopening, said Battambang provincial governor Sok Loo in a press conference on Tuesday.

Loo said that he warmly welcomed the project, which will assist in promoting tourism, culture, and Khmer civilization to more national and international tourists while boosting locals' earnings.

The 4C airport will be renovated to be similar to Siem Reap, Loo said, adding that the State Secretariat of Civil Aviation and the provincial government are now meeting to discuss the implications and no opening date has yet been given.

"After the Covid pandemic recovery, although we haven't examined it yet, the province and civil aviation have lately held multiple meetings to discuss the implications. The conversion of Veal Bek Chan Airport into the modern 4C Airport will continue," Loo said.

The 4C category means that the runway is intended for aircraft with a wing span of up to 36 meters and landing gear with the outermost wheels spaced no more than nine meters away from one another. The number four denotes that the airport's runway is longer than 1,800 meters.

The expansion of Battambang's economy will be aided by the improvement of Veal Bek Chan Airport, which will facilitate travel for both visitors and businesses, he added.

Battambang Airport was first inaugurated in 1967 but was shut down by the Khmer Rouge from 1975 to 1979.