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New Collaborative Ventures Strengthen Cambodia-China Relations

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Cambodia and China have committed to enhancing their partnership by establishing two groundbreaking corridors aimed at fostering growth and prosperity between the two nations. The announcement follows the 7th Cambodia-China Intergovernmental Coordination Committee (Cam-China ICC) meeting, co-chaired by Wang Yi, China’s Foreign Minister, and Sun Chanthol, Cambodia’s Deputy Prime Minister and First-Vice Chairman of the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC).

The focus of their ambitious cooperation includes the development of an ‘Industrial and Technological Corridor’ (ITC) and a ‘Fish and Rice Corridor’ (FRC). These corridors are designed to promote the robust export of Cambodian agricultural products to the vast markets of the People’s Republic of China. The agreement aims to fast-track the creation of a master plan that would see these initiatives come to fruition, indicating a significant step forward in bilateral relations.

During a meeting with Cambodia’s Prime Minister Hun Manet at the Peace Palace, Wang Yi expressed the Chinese government’s dedication to finalizing the master plan promptly, thereby facilitating the prospective benefits of ITC and FRC collaborations in the near future. He also emphasized China’s commitment to assisting Cambodia in the modernization and development of its agro-industrial sector.

Prime Minister Hun Manet responded by proposing the exploration of a Cam-China Free Trade Area and the construction of additional special economic zones within Cambodia to further economic integration.

The strategic alignment with President Xi Jinping’s vision and Cambodia’s leadership has deepened the collaborative efforts towards establishing a shared community characterized by the ‘diamond hexagon cooperation’ principle. This partnership aims to deliver concrete benefits through initiatives like the ITC and FRC, which could significantly influence agricultural and industrial development in the region.

As per the joint press statement, both countries will utilize the coordinating role of the Cam-China ICC to foster a new era of high-quality and mutually beneficial cooperation. This includes bolstering the Belt and Road Initiative’s synergy with Cambodia’s national strategies, accelerating the Cam-China Railway’s preliminary planning, and focusing on agricultural demonstration centers and other key projects that underscore the comprehensive strategic partnership between the two nations.

The agreement also underscores a shared commitment to enhancing the quality of implementation under the China-Cam Free Trade Agreement. This includes boosting the intake of Cambodian agricultural exports by China and encouraging Chinese investments in Cambodia, marking a significant leap towards economic integration and mutual prosperity.

Moreover, Cambodia and China agreed to further their cooperation under the Global Development Initiative, the Global Security Initiative, and the Global Civilization Initiative. This cooperation will extend to engaging more deeply within platforms like the Lancang-Mekong Cooperation and ASEAN-China cooperation, signifying an era of enhanced collaboration and understanding.

The visit of China’s top diplomat to Cambodia has been seen as a significant affirmation of China’s support for Cambodia’s socio-economic development trajectory. According to Lor Vichet, Vice President of the Cambodia Chinese Commerce Association, the recent developments are poised to transform Cambodia into a regional hub for agriculture and industry by improving supply chains and attracting Chinese manufacturing firms seeking to mitigate geopolitical risks.

The 7th Cam-China ICC thus lays a foundation for an enduring partnership that promises to reshape the industrial and agricultural landscapes of Cambodia, driving towards a future of shared growth and development.

Source: Khmer Times

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