Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday announced plans to build two more markets along the border with Vietnam to boost trade.
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The announcement was made during the launch of the first market in the shared border with Vietnam.
Da Market, a project funded with $2 million from Vietnam, is located in Tboung Khmum province’s Da commune.
Mr Hun Sen said the government is now eying Svay Rieng and Kampot province as potential locations for similar markets. The premier asked local authorities in each province to find land suitable for the projects.
“The idea is to develop model markets to increase the flow of Cambodian goods into Vietnam,” Mr Hun Sen said, noting that Cambodia has requested financial support from Vietnam to undertake the projects, but that the Kingdom prefers to finance them with its resources.
“In the past, our budget was limited. Now, I think we can afford to build the model markets with our own money. They will cost about $2 million each. We have enough money for that.”
Mr Hun Sen pointed out that model markets are places where Vietnamese goods are imported into the Kingdom and where Cambodian goods are transported into Vietnam.
Vu Quang Minh, the Vietnamese ambassador to Cambodia, said that Da Market aims to build up trade infrastructure in the border to promote economic and trade exchanges and raise the living standards of locals.
He said it is a place to buy, sell, exchange and transit goods produced in Kratie, Kampong Cham, Ratanakkiri and Mondulkiri to meet demand in Vietnam.
“With its great location, Da Market in Tboung Khmum province will boost trading between our nations,” he said, noting that it will be a convenient place where people living on the border can shop and sell goods.
So far this year, Cambodia and Vietnam have trade about $4.6 billion worth of goods. The countries aim to reach $5 billion in trade a year by the end of 2020.
Mr Hun Sen said that target has already been reached, but pointed out that there are important trade imbalances.
“I ask the Vietnamese government to increase imports of Cambodian goods. Now Vietnam imports 30 tonnes of milled rice from Cambodia a year. I call on our good friend to consider buying some other products from Cambodia,” he said.
Mr Hun Sen also hinted at the possibility of building a market along the border with Thailand.