Cambodia and the Philippines have reaffirmed their commitment to enhancing economic relations between the two ASEAN countries. Both nations will achieve this by boosting bilateral trade and increasing the volume of investments.
A memorandum of understanding (MoU) was virtually penned on December 2 by Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) president Kith Meng and his counterpart at the Philippine Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Benedicto V Yujuico. The MOU is mostly to shore up trade, business and investment cooperation.
The signing took place during the 3rd Meeting of the Cambodia-Philippines Joint Commission for Bilateral Cooperation (JCBC). Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Prak Sokhonn of Cambodia and his Philippine counterpart Teodoro L Locsin Jr. both presided over the meeting.
The CCC said in a statement that the MoU aims to contribute to the strengthening of economic and business cooperation between both countries”.
The deal will focus on specific areas. Firstly, information technology and innovation. Followed by agriculture, manufacturing & business. The deal will also focus on franchising, tourism & the service sector. Finally, the deal will also emphasize the development of small- and medium-sized enterprises.
Cambodia Chamber President excited
The CCC’s Meng said he was “strongly convinced” that the MoU would form a new basis of cooperation. He also believed that it would strengthen Cambodia-Philippine business and economic partnerships and opportunities for expansion.
The two commerce chambers will regularly exchange information. They will also both organise trade and investment missions and exhibitions and hold seminars and conferences. It is also likely they will arrange business matching sessions.
The MoU also agrees to set up the Philippine-Cambodia Business Council in the Philippines. The deal also agrees to set up the Cambodia-Philippines Business Council in the Kingdom. These councils will aid in discussing future investment plans.
On February 17, Prime Minister Hun Sen had called on the Philippines to invest in Cambodia’s rice sector. He suggested they export the commodity back home and to the rest of the world.
He made the plea during a courtesy call paid by the Philippine ambassador to Cambodia Maria Amelita C Aquino at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh.
“The Philippines can invest in Cambodia by financing rice millers, building paddy warehouses and establishing a network to buy paddy for stock and for export to the Philippines,” he said. He added that the Kingdom has about six million tonnes of milled rice in its stockpiles each year.