Dear Khmer Times readers and Friends of Singapore,
Singapore celebrates 55 years of independence on 9th of August 2020. However, amidst the evolving Covid-19 circumstances, decentralised smaller scale events will take the place of the traditional National Day Parade at a central location. Accordingly, I will not be hosting a National Day Reception in Phnom Penh this year. Instead, we will host a few smaller events in the months of August and September to celebrate Singapore’s National Day and to commemorate the 55th Anniversary of the establishment of bilateral relations with the Kingdom of Cambodia, one of the first countries to recognise Singapore’s independence in 1965. Singapore and Cambodia established diplomatic relations on 15 September 1965.
55th Anniversary of Diplomatic Ties
Having ended the year 2019 on an all-time high in bilateral trade, FDI, capacity building and two-way tourist arrivals, we kicked off 2020 with the inaugural Street Art Fest ++ from 15-29 February to celebrate 55 years of diplomatic relations. The two-week long festival chalked up more half a million social media posts and engagements, and more than 15,000 members of the public participated in the festivities and painted the community walls.
Certificates of Ownership of the murals – products of the successful collaboration between Cambodian muralist Fonki and Singaporean artist Yip Yew Chong – will be presented to their respective buyers in the coming weeks. Proceeds from the festival will be handed over to the Cambodian Children’s Fund and Cambodian Living Arts, the designated charities for the Street Art Fest++. The bilateral mural, which was purchased by Vattanac Properties and generously re-gifted to the Embassy, will be installed in front of the Singapore Embassy along Norodom Boulevard where members of the public will be able to appreciate it. It will be unveiled in September to cap off the commemorative year of Singapore-Cambodia relations.
This is my last National Day message for Khmer Times as I will complete my assignment in December. Amidst the socio-economic impact of Covid-19, the Singapore Embassy is committed to finding new and innovative ways to restore bilateral trade, FDI and capacity building efforts to their previous highs. The fact that three of the ministers who were newly promoted in March 2020 are alumni members of an executive leadership or a Master programme in Singapore is a strong testament to the enduring partnership between our two countries and peoples. I am also pleased to note that discussions on several bilateral infrastructure projects are ongoing between the relevant agencies, and we hope to be able to announce good news at an appropriate time.
I wish Cambodia continuing success in its fight against Covid-19, the eventual reopening of its economy and in overcoming the socio-economic challenges ahead. I also wish all Singaporeans, Cambodians and friends of Singapore good health, success and prosperity.
Ambassador of the Republic of Singapore to the Kingdom of Cambodia