PM affirms ‘One-China’ stance

May Titthara / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Hun Sen speaking at a solidarity dinner with the Cambodian-Chinese Association. Supplied

Prime Minister Hun Sen has told a solidarity dinner with the Cambodian-Chinese Association that Cambodia backs the “One-China policy” and will not allow the Taiwanese flag to be raised in the kingdom.
 
This stance would avoid affecting the good relationship between the two countries. 
 
“I could not allow Taiwan to have an office in Phnom Penh or somewhere else,” he said.  “We shall not do anything that harms the sovereignty and independence of China because of Taiwan. 
 
“China respects the sovereignty and independence of Cambodia and thus Cambodia has to do the same to China. If China helped a province that separated from Cambodia would we not be angry? We would have to be angry.” 
 
He said that if there was a gathering at a hotel or a party for Taiwan’s national day it was not permitted to raise the Taiwanese flag.
 
The prime minister said that for nearly two decades, China has helped Cambodia through grants and concessional loans for development.
 
It has also helped to attract more Chinese investment and tourists to visit Cambodia. Cambodia will use Chinese money in the future, government officials have said. 
 
Independent political analyst Meas Ny said that relations between Cambodia and China go a long way back, and the prime minister’s announcement shows the strong relationship between the government and mainland China.
 
“This relationship has helped the country survive while assistance from other countries has been hit due to their own political crises so we must rely on China for development assistance,” he said. “We owe China about 5 to 6 billion dollars, and I am further concerned that we rely too much on [them].”
 
Cambodia’s foreign debt was $5.6 billion at the end of 2015,  the Finance Ministry says.
 
Private sector foreign borrowings were nearly $4 billion at the same time, bringing the country’s total foreign debt to nearly $10 billion. 
 
China’s debt represents about 45 percent of Cambodia’s total foreign debt. The government argues that the loans have contributed significantly to the development of infrastructure and the economy.

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