The relationship between Cambodia and China has been promoted in all sectors, said senior Cambodian officials, urging further cooperation both in the bilateral and multilateral frameworks.

The remarks were made on Wednesday at the Second Cambodia-China Think Tank High-Level Forum: Towards New Development Phase of Cambodia-China Bilateral Relations.

Speaking at the virtual forum, H.E. Bin Chhin, Permanent Deputy Prime Minister and Minister in charge of the Office of the Council of Ministers said that Cambodia and China have a long history of relations, and in the COVID-19 context, the relationship between the two countries has become even more important.

“Cambodia and China are good brothers and good partners who work together on the principles of equality, equal rights, respect for sovereignty and mutual benefit,” H.E. Bin Chhin stressed.

H.E. Sok Sopheak, Secretary of State at the Ministry of Commerce, said China is Cambodia’s main trade partner, and the two-way trade always exceed expectations.

Despite the COVID-19 spread, bilateral trade between Cambodia and China was valued at more than US$8 billion by 2020, and both countries’ leaders expect this amount to reach US$10 billion in the coming 2023, he pointed out.

“Besides achieving comprehensive strategic partnership of cooperation in 2010, Cambodia-China relations have grown closer every year through the support and flexibility of regional and global dialogues,” H.E. Sok Sopheak said. “The two sides also signed memorandums of understanding and protocols on trade and investment, which provides an opportunity to strengthen the bilateral trade and investment more widely and modernly.”

Cambodia and China signed their bilateral free trade agreement (CCFTA) in October 2020. Both sides are pushing the remaining procedures for the agreement to enter into force soon.

“Bilateral trade and investment relations between Cambodia and China are essential in the context of the global spread of COVID-19 and regional and global economic and geopolitical competitions,” H.E. Sok Sopheak underlined.

The forum was also attended by senior speakers from both governments, policy makers and researchers to gather key ideas and concepts as a base for policy and strategy development in order to increase the cooperation between the two countries in all fields, especially economy and trade.

In the first semester of this year, the two-way trade between Cambodia and China rose to US$4.9 billion, up 31 percent compared to the same period last year.

Source: Agency Kampuchea Press

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