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Cambodia Asks Russia to Provide Additional Assistance

Ros Chanveasna / Khmer Times Share:
Foreign Minister Hor Namhong exchanges documents after signing an agreement with Nikolay Nikiforov, Minister of Telecoms and Mass Communication, at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Phnom Penh. KT/Chor Sokunthea

In a two-day closed-door meeting, the government asked its counterpart in the Russian Federation to provide assistance to renovate the historic Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital and continue supporting Cambodian tour guide training, according to a Foreign Affairs Ministry statement released yesterday.
The request was made during the 9th session of the Cambodia-Russia Commission for Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation, which took place in Phnom Penh and was co-chaired by Deputy Prime Minister Hor Namhong and Russian Telecom and Mass Communication Minister Nikolay Nikiforov.
Both sides spent time discussing perspectives for strengthening bilateral ties and cooperation during the meeting – including strengthening investments in the military, technical, business and tourism sectors. The development of hydro-power, culture and education were also discussed.
“Cambodia requests Russia to provide aid for renovating the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hospital through technical training, an experience exchange and providing equipment and medicine,” the statement read. “In the tourism sector, Cambodia requests Russia continues to assist our Russian-language tour guide training.”    
The parties also welcomed the agreement between the Enex Group and the Ministry of Mines and Energy, which together will conduct a feasibility study for the “stung Battambang-2” hydropower project, which will have a 36-megawatt capacity.   
According to an official Russian government website, Mr. Nikiforov noted that bilateral collaboration in the sphere of law enforcement was also discussed during the meeting.
The minister also said special attention should be paid to developing projects that increase commodity turnover between Russia and Cambodia.
In 1956, Cambodia and Russia first established diplomatic relations, which were then suspended during the Khmer Rouge regime. They resumed enthusiastically until the fall of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, when Russian aid to Cambodia all but dropped off.
The volume of bilateral trade between the two countries, however, almost doubled in the 12 years between 2002 and 2014, up from $7 million to $137.7 million, and is now on the rise.

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