[This is the print version of story http://www.abc.net.au/ra/news/stories/s2137118.htm]
Last Updated 12/01/2008, 12:44:42
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Cambodia's seaside airport near Sihanoukville is slated to become the country's largest as a new focus is placed on bringing tourists into the area.
Tourism Minister Thong Khon told the AFP newsagency the airport would be bigger than Phnom Penh International Airport.
A year after its re-opening, service at the Sihanoukville airport remains limited to chartered domestic flights.
But plans are underway to make it a regional travel hub, with the first phase of a 200 million-dollar expansion expected to be completed by March.
The airport, some 230 kilometres southwest of Phnom Penh, had been closed since the early 1980s due to financial difficulties.
Direct flights between Siem Reap, the gateway to Cambodia's famed Angkor temples, and foreign cities have prompted a rise in tourist arrivals.
Officials hope to attract 2.4 million people to Cambodia this year.