The fifth ASEAN Inclusive Business Summit concluded yesterday. The two-day hybrid event had the theme “Together ASEAN IBee” (Inclusive Business enabling environment).
The event was organized by the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology of Cambodia in collaboration with the ASEAN Secretariat; ESCAP; iBAN, a global program funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and implemented by GIZ; OECD; and OXFAM.
Cambodian Senior Minister, Minister of Industry, Science, Technology & Innovation (MISTI), Kitti Settha Pandita Cham Prasidh stated in his opening remarks, “With the vision of Samdech Techo Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Cambodia, to transform and continue safeguarding measures for the National Development from all forms of risks and uncertainties, we identify Inclusive Business (IB) as one of the most rewarding ways to complement our endeavor to reduce poverty at all levels.”
The Summit focused on assisting with the implementation of ASEAN’s Guidelines for the Promotion of Inclusive Business, particularly policy recommendations, as well as policy instruments and mechanisms for IB investment incentives.
The discussions included reviewing progress made in promoting a better enabling environment for IB enabling environment (IBee) in various ASEAN countries and globally; exploring possibilities for working together on policy promotion instruments such as business coaching, accreditation, impact monitoring and joint reporting, and risk reduction financing; having conversations on women’s economic empowerment and climate adaptation solutions through IB; and providing a general forum for exchanging ideas.
As part of the summit, the ASEAN Inclusive Business Awards 2022 were held, honoring ten IB companies from ASEAN countries for their outstanding performance in adhering to IB concepts and generating socioeconomic impacts on people at the Base of the Pyramid (BoP).
During the event, 18 Cambodian companies received the Inclusive Business Accreditation Award. Phare Performing Social Enterprise Co., Ltd is one of them.
Mr. HUOT Dara, CEO of Phare Performing Social Enterprise Co., Ltd., known as Phare, The Cambodian Circus and Phare Creative Studio, expressed his joy to The Better Cambodia. He stated,
“I am extremely honored to receive the Inclusive Business Accreditation Award. The Phare Performing Social Enterprise team is deeply grateful for the recognition we have received for our work, in addition to the CSR award we received from EuroCham last year. This cements the accreditation and recognition that Phare has a viable, impactful, sustainable, and inclusive business model in the creative and cultural tourism industry in Cambodia and beyond. We hope to work closely with our peers to set up a recognition, accreditation, or registration and support mechanism for social enterprises, or in other words, a social and solidarity economy too, in the near future.”
Cambodia has been a leader in ASEAN in promoting inclusive business since 2020. Cambodia launched its first IB landscape study and held its first IB accreditation in 2021, recognizing 18 IB companies. The Royal Government of Cambodia issued a decision in August 2022 to establish the IB Steering Group, led by MISTI, with representatives from government agencies and business associations, to lead the IB initiative in Cambodia.