The Chinese Ambassador to Asean, Huang Xilian, yesterday said China is assisting Cambodia and the countries in the CMLV group to successfully tackle poverty by drawing from its own experience.
The CMLV countries are Cambodia, Myanmar, Laos and Vietnam.
“China is willing to share experiences in poverty eradication, and help Asean countries improve capacity building in this regard, to inject new energy into the building of a closer China-Asean community of shared future,” said Mr Xilian, speaking at the Asean-China-UNDP Symposium on Localising Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) held in Seam Reap.
He said representatives from the International Poverty Reduction Centre in China’s Guizhou Province, the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation China Secretariat, and Yunnan Minzu University have been invited to the event to provide input and explore methods to further enhance China-Asean cooperation in sustainable development and poverty eradication.
“I suggest Asean participants could talk with Chinese experts to get some insightful ideas and opportunities of cooperation on such issues,” the ambassador said.
He also praised Thailand and Malaysia – two countries that together account for just 1 percent of the total poverty in Asean – for their success in tackling poverty.
“While Cambodia could follow and learn from China’s experience, we also have Thailand and Malaysia. They are the two countries that have been very successful in their poverty reduction policies,” he later said at a press conference on the sidelines of the event.
The ambassador said this year’s event focuses on localising SDGs and slashing poverty because poverty eradication is a key goal in the Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development of the United Nations.
“It is also a common challenge for regional countries. China has accumulated abundant experience in poverty eradication, with over 800 million people taken out of poverty in 40 years of reform and opening up.
“Asean has also achieved a lot in poverty eradication, however, there are still large numbers of populations living under the poverty line in some Asean countries,” he said.
He added that Cambodia is on the right track with ongoing public-private partnerships (PPP) but more needed to be done to bring the SDGs closer to realisation.
He said sustainable development has become a key point in China-Asean cooperation and also one of the priority areas of the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation framework.
“As one of the most dynamic strategic partners of Asean, China has always been a supporter of sustainable development in Asean through bilateral and
multilateral cooperation in areas like policy coordination, practical cooperation, institutional innovation and financial assistance,” he said.
The Chinese Mission to Asean and UNDP have held the symposium on sustainable development as a key activity in China-Asean cooperation for three consecutive years.
Aiming at building an effective platform for China and Asean countries to share experiences and enhance exchanges, it is also about explorations for a win-win model for trilateral cooperation in sustainable development that will contribute to south-to-south cooperation, Mr Xilian said.
“We will continue to hold this symposium in the coming years, and explore practical cooperation programmes in Asean countries through this platform and contribute to the implementation of the UN agenda 2030,” he said.
He congratulated the Cambodian government on its achievements in sustainable development and poverty eradication under the leadership of Prime Minister Hun Sen.
China is willing to work together with the Asean Secretariat and UNDP to provide more support to Cambodia for its social and economic development, he added.