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Cambodia’s Vision for Industrial Advancement and Export Diversification

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Prime Minister Hun Manet has articulated a transformative vision for Cambodia, aiming to evolve the nation from being primarily an exporter of raw materials to an economy robust in producing semi-finished and finished goods. This progressive goal is designed to meet both domestic demands and enhance export capabilities, consequently improving the livelihoods of Cambodian citizens.

The Prime Minister relayed these strategic development plans on May 2 during the ceremonial opening of the new Toyota assembly plant situated within the Royal Group Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone.

Addressing the attendees, Prime Minister Hun Manet remarked, “Our efforts are not just about creating employment opportunities; they are concentrated on increasing the productivity and skills of our labor force. We are transforming from an economy that heavily relies on manual agricultural labor to one that embraces agricultural mechanization and industry-based practices.

We are diversifying into areas like manufacturing, tourism, and light industries with an eye towards potentially growing into heavier production sectors as resources and capabilities develop.”

The Prime Minister highlighted that this level of diversification is key to ensuring sustainable development and improving the quality of life for Cambodian citizens. By shifting focus from exporting raw materials to manufacturing higher-value goods, the country can keep more of the value-added process within its borders. “Our vision goes beyond being raw material suppliers; we will produce and provide for our own market while competing in the global export markets,” he further stated.

In line with these aspirations, Premier Hun Manet emphasized the importance of nurturing Cambodia’s human resources. He commended Toyota for their efforts and urged them to establish a training center that would offer national youth opportunities for training and internships. Such initiatives are invaluable for developing expertise within the automotive sector.

These efforts align with the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training’s endeavors to provide practical skill-building programs. The Prime Minister added that hands-on experience in modern manufacturing environments is critical, as certain competencies cannot be acquired through theoretical education alone.

Dr. Hun Manet concluded by asserting that as Cambodia enhances its human resource capabilities, particularly in specialized machinery and industrial skills, the country is poised to attract further foreign investment. Such developments herald a promising future for Cambodia’s economic landscape, with the potential to establish a more self-sufficient and versatile industrial sector.

Source: Khmer Times

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