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Cambodia devoted to globalisation and fair, open trade: Hun Sen

Sok Chan / Khmer Times Share:
Mr Hun Sen at the World Investment Forum yesterday. Supplied

Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday said that Cambodia is fully committed to working with the international community to ensure fair and open trade, as well as maintain regional and global peace, security and stability.

The Cambodian premier was speaking at the World Investment Forum, held in Geneva, Switzerland.

Mr Hun Sen said Cambodia believes globalisation promotes economic growth and reduces poverty, and said his government is committed to enhancing global interconnectedness.

He said there is now an anti-globalisation movement generated by growing inequality among countries, creating distrust among governments and a fear of worldwide integration.

He called on all heads of state to work to protect the current global investment climate and geo-political stability, and build trust in the global financial system and the industrial sector.

“As a member of the United Nations, Cambodia is ready to work with relevant stakeholders to safeguard a free and fair trade system, and maintain regional and global peace, security and stability.

“At the same time, I would like to invite leaders, investors and companies to join us as investment partners to contribute to the development of Cambodia and to global growth,” Mr Hun Sen said.

He assured investors that Cambodia boasts a favorable investment climate, which, he says, has been achieved by ensuring peace, security, political and macroeconomic stability, as well as improving the legal and institutional framework.

“I fully support international policy that promotes regional and global investment, and call on development partners to provide technical assistant to least developed countries in order to support the effective formulation and implementation of growth-oriented policy,” the premier said.

He explained that Cambodia is now developing its vision and strategy to boost foreign direct investment (FDI) in the country.

This strategy, he said, is based on expanding the production base, building soft and hard infrastructure, reducing the cost of electricity, facilitating trade, developing the country’s human capital, embracing new technologies, improving the financial sector, and reforming the legal system and the country’s institutions.

Cambodia’s industrial development policy for the years 2015-2025, which is already being implemented, focuses on adding value to local supply chains and further integrating into regional and global value chains, he added.

He said foreign investment is key to national economic progress and to the realization of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adding that, from 2004 to 2014, the poverty rate in the country was slashed from 53 to just 13.5 percent.

According to the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), FDI inflow to Cambodia increased by 12 percent in 2017, reaching a record level of $2.8 billion. Most of that investment went to the finance, telecommunications, real estate and non-textile industries.

Cambodia is now among the top five least development countries with the highest investment growth, UNTAC estimates.

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