Crossing Cambodia

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Chasing cars, once in a while

What happened? Well, an honest answer is answer is nothing! With the impending elections coming up (photo's of election traffic here) and side issues such as whether or not to prosecute the opposition (leader?) and the sovereignty of the Preah Vihear, all press coverage seems to be dominated by these issues. One would believe that traffic issues such as increasing price of fuel, lack of access and/or safety issues would take a significant place but alas, ...
  • Are paying bribes an election issue? According to the Economic Times Bureau, India:
    'In Cambodia, a survey found that 89% of encounters with traffic police resulted in a bribe'.
    They highlight the UNDP report:
    “The real price of corruption is not paid in currency. The true costs are eroded opportunities, increased marginalisation of the disadvantaged and feelings of injustice,” says a United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) report, Tackling Corruption, Transforming Lives, released on Thursday'.
    Not an issue worth discussing(?), especially if nearly 90% take part in the system...
  • Cars containing timber? Somehow a recent spate of crack downs on this type of smuggling has been decreed. In Kampong Cham and in Stung Treng provinces.
  • Vietnam continues to complain about subsidizing Cambodian fuel prices.
    'Last week, the market management unit of Kien Giang Province caught the owners of two gas stations as they prepared to illegally transport 7,000 liters of gasoline to Cambodia.

    The arrests have not seemed to deter the many others involved in fuel smuggling'.
    The solution would be to have either a proper border control (which would also solve the problem with 'cars containing timber') or stopping subsidizing fuel consumption altogether.
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