Environmental report on track rehabilitation of Cambodia railway in Feb 2012 by ADB is here:
Toll Royal derails regional projects, by Don Weinland, PPP, Tuesday, 01 May 2012
The unclear future of Cambodia’s national railway, following Toll Royal Railways’ suspension of operations on March 31, has cast doubt not only on the oft-delayed redevelopment project but also on a larger build-out expected to connect much of Asia.
Toll Royal, a joint venture by Australian logistics firm Toll Group and Cambodian conglomerate Royal Group of Companies, had halted operations after continued setbacks in the redevelopment prevented the company generating sufficient revenues, sources familiar with the matter told the Post in March. But the stoppage also will affect the completion of the so-called Singapore-Kunming, China line, which has been under discussion for nearly 20 years and in which Cambodia is expected to be one of three key links. “Obviously, this has implications well beyond the borders of Cambodia. It’s a major setback,” Pierre Chartier, a transportation expert at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia, said from Bangkok yesterday.
Slower progress on Cambodia’s rail lines could mean a slowdown for regional connectivity in general. If rehabilitation and operational efforts decelerate on the Cambodian side, efforts to restore connecting tracks in Thailand and Vietnam could also lose momentum, Chartier said. The Cambodian rail model was a unique one, not only in the region but also in the world, Chartier said. While most governments look internally for rail operators, Toll’s concession was a bellwether for privatisation in the industry, he said.
“It was an interesting model for development. This could have created a best-practice example for other countries. The fact that [the Toll concession] is causing a lot of problems is not going to be good for the cause of privatisation.” Domestically, delayed rail progress would mean more traffic on the roads, more pollution and more vehicle accidents, Chartier noted. But more than six weeks after Toll Group notified Cambodian officials of its imminent suspension of rail operations in the Kingdom, neither the government nor the company has issued a statement formally announcing the freeze.
The Cambodian government has placed the burden on Toll Group to make clear its intentions and future in the Kingdom. “I don’t think there will be an official comment from the government because Toll did not make an official comment,” Council of Ministers spokesman Ek Tha said yesterday. “It is Toll’s responsibility to make this announcement.”
Toll Group spokesman Andrew Ethell said in Melbourne yesterday the company had yet to release an official statement on its Cambodian operations and did not offer a time frame for a potential announcement. Rehabilitation of the railway was “well behind schedule” and did not comply with Toll’s business plans, Paul Power, a consultant at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) said in March. Other inside sources had said that frequent delays in the project had frustrated Toll.
The suspension on operations, which reportedly will last a year, has perplexed the government. Cambodia’s integral role in the Singapore-Kunming rail line made Toll’s 30-year concession a keystone for rail lines that were hoped to link all of peninsular Southeast Asia. “I can’t understand why they would pull out. Cambodia is the centre of this rail network,” Ek Tha said.
According to a report prepared for the World Bank in July last year, the lack of rail transport could also stymie rice exports. “Indeed, several of the leading exporters express the view that exports could stall at 250,000 tons before rail improvements and port improvements are in place two-plus years hence,” the report states. “The sole reliance on containers will preclude reaching the 1-million-tonne export target for 2015 for both logistics and marketing considerations.” Transporting Cambodian rice costs US$15 per 100 kilometres, three times higher than in Thailand, Sok Muniroth, an agro-business adviser at Agricultural Development International, said yesterday. Rail development was closely linked to the competitiveness of Cambodia’s milled-rice exports, he said. “This is still a big issue in Cambodia.”
Toll Royal sent letters to officials at the MPWT and Asian Development Bank on March 16, the Post reported at the time. The company halted operations on Cambodia’s only functional line – a stretch between Phnom Penh and Touk Meas, near Kampot – on March 31. Half of the company’s Cambodian staff were reportedly laid off the same day, although Toll has so far been mum on the exact number of domestic workers that were let go.
Last edited by Yappofloyd; 07-06-12 at 02:24 PM.
It has been a bit unclear given differing reports just how much of each line had been completed.
In the above ADB Feb 2012 report, as at Jan 2012;
Southern Line 264km:
(PP to Shin) is reported to be 54% complete,
Northern Line 386km:
PP to Sisophon is reported to be 4% complete,
Sisophone to Poipet is reported to be 51% complete
According to this article in the The Cambodia Daily on 3 May 2012 posted on http://cambodiatrainspotter.wordpress.com/ we have the following;
Southern line : 52%
Northern Line 18%
Thus, we know that the Southern Line is over half complete but only a small section, the Sisophon to Poitpet end, of the Northern Line has been completed. In some respects, it may have been a mistake to prioritise the Southern Line for freight traffic for sea export with little passenger traffic when perhaps the Northern line link to Thailand could possibly provide much more passenger and freight traffic immediately? In any event, the fact that Toll has pulled out means it will probably take some time to get rehab back on track. Unless a Chinese company swoops in.....
On the Toll website, no recent updates nor news about them pulling out - http://www.tollroyalrailway.com/
Last edited by Yappofloyd; 15-05-12 at 07:13 PM.
Show me the money!
Rail looks for new funding by Don Weinland, Phnom Penh Post, May 23 2012
It’s a nearly 300-kilometre stretch of rail in disrepair. More than 60 bridges – some crumbling, some dotted with landmines at the base – lie on the line between the towns of Bat Deong, northwest of Phnom Penh, and Sisophan near the Thai border.
It’s also where about US$118 million in grants and concessional loans from the Asian Development Bank, AusAid and other donors came up short in the effort to rehabilitate the country’s railways. “More reserves should have originally been put in place,” Peter Broch, senior transportation economist at ADB in Cambodia, said yesterday, adding that the tracks were in a poorer state than originally thought when assessments were conducted five years ago. The shortfall, and the reportedly slow pace of progress on the line, led to the suspension on March 31 of Toll Royal Group’s operations.
A Toll Royal employee climbs aboard a train at Phnom Penh Railway Station in 2010.
The company, which has a 30-year concession for operations, has yet to issue a formal statement announcing the suspension, but a majority of the company’s staff have left the job. Sources of funding for the remaining track are unclear, but an official at ADB yesterday said the line that would connect Thailand to Cambodia’s only deepwater port would be complete in 2015.
The search for the remaining money, which experts yesterday said could not be assessed at present, was now in the hands of the government. “This is with the expectation that the government would be able to mobilise some sources of funding,” ADB Cambodia country director Putu Kamayana said yesterday. “I understand that there are public and private sources looking into it.” There’s an equal amount of speculation on Toll’s concession, which is in partnership with domestically owned Royal Group of Companies.
While ADB expects Toll to operate the 256-kilometre southern line when completed at the end of this year, Putu Kamayana also said that “we’ve heard the rumour that there are others waiting in the wings”. No firms have stepped forward as the successor to Toll. Touch Chankosal, a secretary of state at the Ministry of Transportation and Public Works, declined to comment yesterday on other possible companies interested in the Toll concession. Council of Ministers spokesman Ek Tha yesterday also declined to comment on developments regarding Cambodia’s railways.
In early May, Pierre Chartier, a transportation specialist at the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia, told the Post that a slowdown on Cambodia’s railways could lead to slower regional progress on both the Vietnamese and Thai sides of the track. A functioning railroad in Cambodia would save $1 billion in road and sea transportation costs during the first 30 years of operation, according to an ADB estimate.
A video by thai rail enthusiast, หม่องวิน มอไซ, of the Poipet to Sisphon section. Obviously, still waiting on ballast. Taken on 17 March, 6km from Poipet;
Last edited by Yappofloyd; 07-06-12 at 02:27 PM.
While the rail service to Thailand has not been revived yet, the bus service between BKK and Siem Riap and BKK to Phnom Penh will be started on 1 August 2012 with 10 buses Transport Co.Ltd. and 30 trucks while Cambodian offer 30 buses and 10 trucks a day .. even though Thailand want to run 100 buses and trucks per day
The transportation routes between 2 countries will be
1. BKK - Kabin Buri - Sa Kaew - Aranyaprathet
2. BKK - Laem Chabang - Phanom Sarakham - Kabin Buri - Aranyaprathet - Poipet - Sisophon - Pursat - Phnom Penh - Neak Luang - Bavet (border point to Vietnam)
China may fund Cambodia-Vietnam rail
By Rann Reuy
The Phnom Penh Post
Wednesday, 13 June 2012
Cambodia was in discussions with the Chinese government on funding for a 250-kilometre stretch of rail line between Phnom Penh and Vietnam, in what Cambodian officials yesterday called a move away from a “complicated” Asian Development Bank loan.
Va Sim Sorya, director general at the Ministry of Public Works and Transportation, said the government could do without the requirements tagged to ADB loans, and fund the project with up to US$600 million in Chinese backing.
“China doesn’t have so many conditions, but Chinese technicians are still well-studied,” he said yesterday at a workshop on infrastructure, although he did not specify which conditions were undesirable.
Interest rates on ADB concessional loans averaged an annual 1.32 per cent after grace periods, according to data compiled by NGO Forum for Cambodia last year.
China’s concessional lending held the highest rates from any institution or country at an average 1.83 per cent per year.
ADB’s social safeguard policy from 2009 listed several requirements for compensating and restoring income to those affected by its rail project, although some NGOs have claimed that the bank has not followed some of the specifications.
Loans from China did not appear to have any such conditions.
“ADB stands by its very comprehensive and well-developed safeguards. That’s something that comes along with the loans,” Peter Brimble, deputy country head at ADB Cambodia, said yesterday.
Projects implemented by China happened more quickly than those by “other parties”, Tram Iv Teuk, Minister of Public Works and Transportation, added yesterday.
The railway rehabilitation project on the country’s northern and southern lines – of which the majority was funded by ADB – saw substantial setbacks earlier this year when concessional holder Toll Royal quietly suspended its operation, reportedly because the project was taking too long.
Now, a 300-kilometre section of track on the northern line lacks the funding to be completed, ADB said last month.
Finding new sources of funding was the responsibility of the government, the bank noted.
Yesterday’s announcement from the government met with strong opposition from Sam Rainsy Party lawmaker Son Chhay, saying Chinese companies have built low-quality roads and other infrastructure at higher interest rates.
“We don’t oppose the need to get funding to serve the national economy, but it must be done transparently,” he said, adding that no bidding process existed for such projects.
To contact the reporter on this story: Rann Reuy at email@example.com
Even though track rehab may be suspended, the demands for railway link is still existed. Therefore, Cambodian government is appealing Thai government to construction the 7 km railway line from Aranyaprathet to Poipet along with the new bridge to replace the dilapidated iron bridge to allow Thai railway to reach Poipet before going further by Cambodian railways to Battambang.
However, Thai government have to find the loan to finance the construction of 7-km track from Aranyaprathet to Poipet along with the new bridge and revive Klong Luek station at km 259+000 (4.5 km from Aranyaprathet)as the immigration control station.
Of course the Cambodians will take the Chinese money and run with it given that there are no strings attached! That is what the govt has been doing for a number of years now in order to reduce it reliance upon western donor funds for infrastructure projects which do impose social, environmental and transparent accounting conditions.
Originally Posted by Wisarut
Planning failures derail aid project, by Philip Heijmans and Tom Hyland, 17/06/12 Sydney Morning Herald
AN AUSTRALIAN-funded rail project in Cambodia has been marred by poor construction, botched surveys leading to the evictions of families, infighting between contractors, delays and cost overruns, a leaked official report shows. It also reveals that workers on the project endure unsafe working conditions without proper accommodation, clean water or hygienic toilets.
The disruption is exposed in a report by the international consortium funding the $143 million project – Australia’s international aid agency AusAID and the Asian Development Bank. Australia has pledged $26 million to the project, which is already at the centre of controversy over the resettlement of thousands of people forced to move by construction work. Frustrated by delays, the Australian company Toll Holdings, part of a joint venture that was to operate the railway when construction was complete, suspended its role in March.
The project involves rehabilitating or building 641 kilometres of track, with the aim of integrating Cambodia with a regional network including Vietnam and Thailand. It has come under fire from Cambodian human rights groups after disrupting more than 4000 families living along the tracks, of whom 1050 had to move home. The report, prepared by AusAID and ADB experts in April and May, found existing problems were far from resolved, and also exposed new issues.
It reveals that botched survey methods on part of the line misjudged where construction would take place.
The mistake, discovered only in April, means more people might have to move. ”In order to physically build the railway, more households may be affected and additional resettlement may be required,” it says. ”This is a major issue for all stakeholders and must be resolved as a matter of urgency.” The report reveals defects and ”poor construction methodology” on parts of the line and criticises foreign consultants for a ”lack of control and poor supervision” early in the work. Construction is being carried out by France’s TSO (Cambodia) Co Ltd and engineering by Japan’s Nippon Koei Co. The French company declined to comment, while the Japanese company could not be contacted.
The report says the relationship between the two companies has become ”strained” and it calls on them ”to develop a more amicable and mutually respectful mode of co-operation”. It urges Cambodia’s railways department to take a more active role in promoting ”a non-adversarial environment focused on completing the works” and managing the project – tasks the department is reluctant to take up. The report says railway officials relied on consultants to do routine management, even though they were meant to take over day-to-day operations after Toll pulled out.
Toll has a 30-year concession to operate the network in a joint venture called Toll Royal Railways, with a conglomerate owned by Australian-Cambodian tycoon Kith Meng. Toll has made no public statement on its withdrawal from the project. ”I am not in a position to comment at all,” said Andrew Ethell, Toll’s general manager for corporate affairs. But in a leaked letter dated March 16, Toll Royal Railways informed the Cambodian government it would suspend operations until next year because delays meant the project was not profitable.
Work on the southern part of the line was due to be finished by May last year, but it is now 335 days behind schedule and will not be complete until October this year, although heavy rain could push this back until 2013. Work on the northern part was due to be complete by the end of this month. The report says it is ”possible” the work will be done by September next year.
On labour conditions, the report says, despite improvements, workers’ camps in the south were ”mostly garbage-strewn and water supply in some camps [was] not regularly replenished”. Camps in the north ”lacked basic provisions (proper accommodation facilities, safe water supply, hygienic toilets, etc)”. Last month the Australian embassy in Phnom Penh said it was aware of poor working conditions and inappropriate surveying methods and had asked the project’s partners to investigate. Consultants on the project and the ADB have admitted to the Cambodian press that the project is running out of funding and requires between $50 million and $100 million to complete, a shortfall the ADB has refused to pay.
An AusAID spokeswoman said problems revealed by the report were not uncommon for such complex projects. Despite this, she said it was making good progress and was on track for completion by 2015. The report highlighted a lack of accountability in Australia’s overseas aid program, said Gareth Bryant, a campaigner with the AID/WATCH activist group.
■ Australia is spending $26m to help rebuild Cambodia’s rail system
■ All up, the project will cost $143m
■ It involves rehabilitating 641 km of track
■ Proponents say it will help lift Cambodia out of poverty
■ About 4000 families, many living in shanty towns, have been affected
■ About 1050 families have had to move
Well, the Chinese version of String Attached on the aids will be in forms of the strips along the railway lines to allow Chinese to settle down on Cambodian soil with PLA Guards along the strips just like the case of Southern Machuria Railways run by A Japanese corporation.
Originally Posted by Yappofloyd
Special Survey on Cambodian railway on Sisophon - Poipet section by Ajarn Ek
MCOT Documentary about Track Rehab in Cambodia along with the Norry
Toll Royal to Restart Rail Services Next Month
ฺัBy Philip Heijmans,
The Cambodia Daily, 10 July. 2012
Less than four months after suspending work on Cambodia's dilapidated railway network, Toll Royal Railways (TRR), the network's operator, has informed the government that it will recommence transporting construction materials needed to build the southern line on Aug. 1, company officials said yesterday.
The decision to go back to work came after TRR, a joint venture between Australia's Toll Holdings and Cambodia's Royal.
Group, said it had suspended its work on March 31 for one year, telling the government that completion of the southern line to Sihanoukville was taking too long and that the project was no longer profitable.
"We [will] commence operations and will restart in order to complete the [southern] track line since it is nearly finished," Kith Meng, chairman of Royal Group, said yesterday, referring to an email sent by TRR to the government and dated June 22.
In that email, sent by TRR's CEO Bobby Louw and addressed to officials at the Ministry of Public Works and Transport—including the director of the Railway Department Ly Borin—the firm also states its intention to start operations again.
"Please be advised that Toll Royal Railway intends [on] restarting commercial train services between Phnom Penh and Touk Meas/Kampot on 1 August 2012," Mr. Louw said in the email obtained yesterday.
When TRR pulled out of the project, it also cut half of its 120 Cambodian staff. In May, a draft memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the government and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) showed that the project may require more families to be relocated along 6 km of the northern line in Poipet City due to inappropriate surveying techniques being carried out by the project's subcontractors.
It was unclear yesterday whether the staff on the project would be rehired, or if work on parts of the northern line would start again any time soon.
Only one of the network's three lines has been completed—48 km between Poipet and Serei Saophoan City in Banteay Meanchey province. Progress on the Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville line is 61.5 percent complete, while the 386-km line between Phnom Penh and Poipet is just 27.8 percent complete, according to the draft MOU.
Putu Kamayana, country director of the ADB—which has so far contributed $84 million in funds to rehabilitate the network—welcomed Toll's decision to start work again.
'We believe that this will facilitate completion of the remaining rehabilitation work on the railway lines," he said in an email. "It will also enable the railway to resume transporting cement from Tuk Meas, which will generate some revenues for Toll Royal Railway."
The reinstatement of TRR's train services will mean quicker and less expensive delivery of 3,000 tons of cement to Kampot province every week.
The 266-km southern line from Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville was initially expected to be completed in late 2011, but "poor construction methodology" delayed completion until October of this year, according to the MOU.
And there could be yet further delays.
Claude Petit country manager for TSO Cambodia, a subcontractor on the project said yesterday that the final 20 km heading to the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port is often under water during the wet season as the track currently runs below ground level. Train services are, therefore, not expected until at least March, he said.
"We are worried because we would like to finish the line as soon as possible, but after heavy rain the track line is lower than the street level and because there is new construction there, the water remains there stagnating," he said. "It is an issue that has to be dealt with by the authorities since it is not in our contract."
As well as TSO, Sino Pacific Construction Corp., a company based in Vietnam, is also working on the project as a subcontractor.
Despite the resumption of Toll's services on part of the southern line, the government still has to address where it plans to get the additional $50 million to $100 million in funds it will take to complete the project, said Mr. Bonn, director of the railway department inside the Ministry of Transportation.
"We still have not yet considered this issue and the ministry has not studied...how much will be needed to spend on the project" he said.
The total cost of the project so far stands at $141.6 million
ADB country director heads for Myanmar
The Phnom Penh Post Wednesday, 11 July 2012 Stuart Alan Becker
Putu Kamayana, country director of the Asia Development Bank, speaks to the Post during an interview yesterday in Phnom Penh. Photograph: Meng Kimlong/Phnom Penh Post
Next week marks the departure of Asian Development Bank country director Putu Kamayana to open a Myanmar office for the Asian Development Bank.
He took time to reflect on his experience in Cambodia, his positive reaction to Toll Royal’s resumption of the Cambodia railway operations and his excitement about heading up an ADB presence in Myanmar.
Kamayana, 58, who arrived in Cambodia in September 2009 to serve as ADB country director, expects a railway freight service between Phnom Penh and Sihanoukville to begin by early next year.
Kamayana said Toll Royal would enjoy the advantages of being operator of the project, enabling them to save money by carrying construction materials by rail.
“We’re glad to see Toll Royal resume their operations because that will facilitate the rehabilitation work, just by the ability of the trains to carry the needed materials. They will also be able to start earning revenues again,” he said.
“I think this is a very important example of a public-private partnership initiative. This project is so important for regional connectivity: to establish a rail link from Singapore to Sihanoukville and is bound to raise the efficiency and lower the cost of transporting freight within Cambodia was well as from Thailand and Malaysia down to Singapore.”
Kamayana said he expected the missing rail link between Kunming, China, and Singapore – the section from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh City – to be completed in the future, for the economic benefit of all.
“We fully expect that rail link will happen in the future and that it will enable freight from Singapore all the way to Europe by rail and that’s phenomenal. It means lower cost of transport and having a good means to move freight to China, Russia and Europe.”
An Indonesian Hindu from Bali, Kamayana has spent the past 16 years working for the Asian Development Bank. Originally trained as an architect, he earned an MBA in San Diego.
He’s happy with the prospects for lower freight rates and regional integration now that Toll Royal is back in business on the Cambodian railways.
“Of course we’re happy. We feel this is a good project for them. We have experienced implementation delays because of various problems that have cropped up in carrying out the work. The resettlement issues have not really delayed the implementation.
“Because of the delays, they are incurring more costs than were being covered by revenues generated by transporting cement. When they come back we understand there is potential for them to find other clients. The railroad track has been rehabilitated beyond Kampot, so at least they can serve Kampot already,” he said.
Kamayana said it was important to have the railway operational during the rehabilitation work because it enabled the operator to bring in their own equipment at low cost instead of having to use trucks.
He retires in March 2014, but before that, he’s looking forward to his Myanmar assignment, starting July 30.
He previously served in Hanoi for two years as well as Dacca, Bangladesh, for four years and out of the ADB headquarters office in Manila, working in both Kazakhstan and Turkmenistan.
“I will be heading up ADB’s extended mission in Myanmar, which is tasked with the re-engagement of ADB with Myanmar, establishing an office there. I’m tremendously excited because this is a once-in-a-lifetime thing.”
Kamayana said there were many things left to happen before a fully fledged ADB office could be opened in Myanmar. The multilateral development banks including ADB and the World Bank are still currently restricted from providing substantial assistance including lending to Myanmar until the sanctions have been removed.
Because the United States is now in the midst of a presidential election, with the US Congress opposing many of the Obama administration’s initiatives, a full lifting of Myanmar economic sanctions may be unlikely to happen this year.
“The administration could convince Congress to lift the sanctions, which probably won’t happen in an election year. The second way is to wait for the sanctions to expire. That’s what’s holding back the ADB and World Bank.
“I think the poor are hurt the most by sanctions.”
Myanmar’s natural economic advantages of a large land mass twice the size of Vietnam, 60 million people, a big coastline, oil and gas reserves, minerals and gems as well as tourism all showed great potential.
However, the country would require a sound regulatory system in order for economic development to really take off, he said.
“All of these businesses that want to come into Myanmar need solid legal and regulatory systems. All of the infrastructure, electric power, roads and the court system are needed in order for companies to make their investments.
“Who is going to finance them? The government needs foreign assistance for all of these things. Until the multilateral development banks are allowed to work there, things are not going to change very quickly, despite the Europeans lifting sanctions and despite American partial lifting. Who is going to risk it before things get much clearer?”
The Cambodian railway network and timelines. Courtesy ADB.
This implied that:
1. the section from Phnom Penh to Tuek Meas done in October 2010
2. the section from Phnom Penh to Trapheang Tnod (dropping point to Kampng Chhnang) will be done by the end of 2012
3. the section from Sisophon to Poipet will be done in 2012
4. the container yard at Russei Kaeo will be done by the end of 2013
5. the section from Poipet to Aranyaprathet will be done by the end of 2014 - with the request to built the new Poipet station building & station yard from Thai loan.
6. Container Yard at Samrong and Sihanoukville Port will be done by the end of 2014
7. the section from Trapheang Tnod to Sisophon via Battambang will be done in 2015
Kamayana described the present Myanmar government as “very reform minded”.
“They need to start showing results. Things are probably not going to move as fast as they had hoped. I think the reformists are feeling under pressure. They are drawing up a development strategy which is going to be approved soon that will set out their priorities in agricultural production, the education system, similar to what’s been done here in Cambodia.”
He suggested that Myanmar could learn lessons from Cambodia about building the capacity of government institutions and in the population with primary secondary, vocational and technical training.
“Lessons can be learned from Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos, who have been through development. The financial sector needs to be modernised. All of these things have to be done and will have to be done in a systematic way that doesn’t overwhelm the authorities and the people so that it is realistic and achievable. It has to be done at a sound pace. It is a huge task to be closed for decades and suddenly open up without getting overwhelmed.”
Kamayana answered a few questions on the eve of his farewell to Cambodia:
What’s the most important thing the Cambodian government needs to change?
Civil service reform and compensation reform are needed in order to improve the efficiency of the government. Cambodia is already a relatively open economy, but I think more can be done to improve the enabling environment for the private sector to flourish. The private sector is the engine of growth. The government needs the private sector to play a pivotal role. It will enable the government to play the enabling role and regulating business to not take undue advantage of the people, but so the private sector can make fair profit and promote development of the country and that includes small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Unless you develop and enable SMEs you are not going to get large scale entrepreneurs. That’s the only way the economy will grow and tax revenues will increase so that government spending can increase too.