Wednesday, 9 January 2008

Cambodia's oldest English newspaper to publish weekly

PHNOM PENH - CAMBODIA'S oldest English-language newspaper will publish weekly instead of once every two weeks under a new ownership deal meant to make the paper more competitive, its founder said on Tuesday.

Ross Dunkley and Bill Clough of Australia and Michel Dauguet of France have bought a controlling interest in the Phnom Penh Post, said Michael Hayes, a US citizen who founded the paper 15 years ago.

Mr Dunkley is the chief executive officer of Myanmar Consolidated Media, which publishes the Myanmar Times newspaper in that country, and Mr Clough owns a mining and oil exploration company in Perth, Australia, said Mr Hayes, who said he will stay on as the paper's editor-in-chief.

The newspaper is now published once every two weeks and will go weekly under the new ownership, Mr Hayes said. It was not immediately clear when the new publication schedule would start.

'It has been several years that I have been looking for an investor to help expand the Post,' he said in an e-mailed response to a reporter's questions.

Mr Hayes said that the Post is not in debt, though it just breaks even financially.

'It has never really been easy to run a paper here in Cambodia,' he said.

The Post is a respected publication in Cambodia's media world, and sometimes draws the government's ire. The paper is read mostly by expatriates, overseas subscribers and government officials.

The Post became Cambodia's first English newspaper in 1992 when Mr Hayes started it with US$50,000 (S$71,689) in savings - as well as two computers and a fax machine. -- AP

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