A recently formed public-private partnership aims to boost industrialisation and public transportation, foster innovation, promote renewable energy and enhance access to housing.
On Friday, local logistics firm WordBridge Group joined forces with two agencies of the United Nations: the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO).
They will be collaborating on a number of existing projects to help the country attain the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
In partnership with UNDP, WordBridge will conduct studies on adopting renewable energy in the manufacturing sector and in low-income households, financing access to affordable housing, and improving public transport, as well as supporting small and medium-sized enterprises.
The partnership will also conduct research on opportunities for localized circular economies, improving waste management in industrial settings, and developing entrepreneurial skills, among others.
Sear Rithy, chairman of WorldBridge, said work with both agencies will revolve around existing WorldBridge projects in affordable housing, green logistics, fleet management and the development of SME clusters.
He said that the partnerships link UN’s SDGs with innovative projects in the private sector, adding that they “will make growth not only economically attractive but also beneficial to society.”
“The economic development and future growth in Cambodia must be done in a way which is sustainable and has positive social impact,” Mr Rithy said.
“By joining forces with UNDP and UNIDO, we feel we will not only be able to achieve our initial objectives but will be able to go beyond and bring more meaningful and sustainable results in our projects,” he said.
Nick Beresford, country director at UNDP, said the recently signed memorandum of understanding is in line with UNDP’s goal to promote sustainable business practices and investment in areas with high social and economic impact.
“With an impact across multiple SDGs, this continued partnership and those alike, are important steps in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030,” he said.
Sok Narin, UNIDO’s country representative, said the MoU provides a framework that allows the agency to work more closely with the private sector to promote sustainability in the local industry. He said they will cooperate with WorldBridge in their SME Cluster Development project.
The collaboration will begin this month with the planning of a ‘SME Cluster Development’ workshop scheduled for mid-September in Phnom Penh.