SIEM REAP, Cambodia, Nov. 16 (Xinhua) -- Chinese-invested Siem Reap Angkor International Airport (SAI) in northwest Cambodia's Siem Reap province was officially inaugurated on Thursday.
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet presided over the inauguration ceremony, which was attended by more than 1,000 people.
Speaking at the event, Hun Manet said the SAI was another fruit of good cooperation between Cambodia and China under the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) and was a new achievement in the kingdom's aviation industry.
"The Siem Reap Angkor International Airport is the fruit of peace and is the new outstanding achievement of the ironclad friendship between Cambodia and China," he said.
Hun Manet said the airport was launched as Cambodia and China celebrated the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations, and China marked the 10th anniversary of the BRI's inception.
"The inauguration of this airport today is a new testament to the solid diplomatic ties and close cooperation between Cambodia and China," he said.
Hun Manet said the airport will give a big boost to the tourism sector in Siem Reap province, and local residents will directly benefit from it.
Invested by the Angkor International Airport Investment (Cambodia) Co., Ltd., an affiliate of China's Yunnan Investment Holdings Ltd., the 700-hectare airport was designed in traditional Cambodian architecture style.
The 4E-level international airport will be able to handle 7 million air passengers per annum from 2024 and up to 12 million passengers annually from 2040.
With a 3,600-meter-long runway, SAI is currently Cambodia's biggest airport and the main gateway to the UNESCO-listed Angkor Archaeological Park, one of the country's most popular tourist attractions.