Cambodia and Vietnam have agreed to work together to develop smart cities.
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The Agence Kampuchea Presse reported that the issue was among the major topics discussed during a meeting between Pa Socheatevong, Phnom Penh Municipal Council president, and a visiting delegation from Vietnam headed by Nguyen Thi Le, deputy secretary of Ho Chi Minh City Party Committee.
The report mentioned Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam’s commercial centre, and Cambodia’s capital city of Phnom Penh as the focal points for cooperation.
Mr Socheatevong was quoted as saying that Phnom Penh has developed tremendously, but that it faces traffic congestion and waste management problems that need to be addressed.
Ho Chi Minh City is experiencing many of the same problems as it races ahead as Vietnam’s most important commercial hub.
The parties agreed that cooperation in smart city development will be critical in solving these issues.
‘Smart city’ is a sustainable development model that uses technology and data to make operations and life in an urban area better and more efficient. The goal is to solve many of the problems faced by cities, including traffic jams, pollution, and high crime rates.
The report did not mention the details of the cooperation but said that both countries could benefit from the exchange of ideas, experience, and technology.
The desire to create smart cities in Cambodia is on the upswing after Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, and Battambang were included in the Asean Smart Cities Network (ASCN), a Japanese initiative that aims to support the creation of technologically advanced urban areas across Southeast Asia.
Citing its progress and expansion, experts at a recent forum have also said that it is high time for Phnom Penh to develop into a smart city.
In Vietnam, the drive to create smart cities is in full swing, with Ho Chi Minh City leading the way.
In March, Ho Chi Minh City came up with a scheme to transform itself into a smart city by 2025, becoming the first city in Vietnam to do so. The cities of Hanoi and Danang and the provinces of Bac Ninh and Binh Duong followed with their own smart city development plans.