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Tough times for tuk-tuk drivers

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Global financial crisis affects Cambodia. Tuk-tuk drivers feel the impact of the crises due to the decrease of tourism. In Phnom Penh the downturn in business has come as a shock to tuk-tuk drivers whose livelihood partly depends on tourists. Tuk-tuk drivers in Phnom Penh used to get between 7-10 dollars a day before the decline but now they earn 1.5 to 5 dollars a day.

According to the Ministry of Tourism, the number of visitors to the country has grown from 1 million in 2004 to 2 million in 2007, but in the second half of 2008 the number of visitors stated

decline and the trend is expected to continue till the end of next year. Cambodia tries to defend itself against the current dip in visitors from Europe and the US by advertising heavily in Asia. The idea is to appeal to the people who live in neighboring countries. Now more than half of the tourists are from Asia. (Cambodia Daily, March 26, 2009)