The fifth edition of the India-CLMV Business Conclave wrapped up yesterday in Phnom Penh, with attending officials committing to enhancing business ties between participating countries, and the possibility of a direct flight connecting Cambodia and India in the air.
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The two-day event brought together prominent members of the private sector and high-ranking trade officials from India as well as Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar and Vietnam, who are collectively known as CLMV.
Apart from promoting new business partnerships, the forum aims to provide a platform for decision makers in CLMV countries to interact with Indian companies involved in trading, manufacturing, processing, engineering, consultancy and construction.
Speaking to journalists after the event, Cambodian Commerce Minister Pan Sorasak said he expects great progress will be made in trade and business cooperation as a result of the event.
“We can expect trade between CLMV countries and India to increase,” he said, explaining that all participating countries have agreed to strengthen trade ties and cooperation in other sectors, particularly tourism.
Mr Sorasak said CLMV countries can benefit from India’s vast experience and expertise in the technology, education, and pharmaceutical sectors, while CLMV countries, in turn, can offer their know-how in the agricultural industry.
Creating direct flights between India and CLMV countries was another important item in the agenda.
“We are expecting a direct air link between Cambodia and India very soon, maybe even this year,” the Cambodian minister announced.
Exports from CLMV countries to India were valued at $8.11 billion from April 2017 to February this year, according to figures from the Indian Department of Commerce. India’s export to CLMV were worth just over $5 billion during the same period.
Trade volume between Cambodia and India equalled $126 million in 2017. Cambodia exported mostly agricultural products, while India’s shipments consisted mostly of electronics and pharmaceuticals, according to the Ministry of Commerce in Cambodia.