Vietnam, Cambodia economic partnership has more room to grow: PM Hun Manet


Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet speaks at the Vietnam-Cambodia Investment and Trade Promotion Forum on Dec. 12, 2023 in Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy

Vietnam and Cambodia have much potential for economic partnership if they can connect supply chains and make use of trade agreements, said Cambodian PM Hun Manet on Tuesday.

"Vietnam is the first ASEAN country that I chose to officially visit since taking office," said Manet at the Vietnam-Cambodia Investment and Trade Promotion Forum.

He said the decision highlighted the cooperative relationship between the two countries, both bilaterally and multilaterally.

He also said that the Vietnam-Cambodia relationship has beendeveloping through increasing trade, investment, and services.

Cambodia continues to show economic resilience with its GDP growth target set for 6.6% next year, Manet said.

Foreign direct investment to into Cambodia has also increased in recent years. In the first ten months of 2023, FDI rose 4%to$4 billion with 66 new projects, including one worth $73 million from Vietnam.

Vietnam's FDI currently accounts for 2% FDI flow to Cambodia and this figure could be higher given the potential and advantageous position of the two countries, officials say.

Manet said that although economic cooperation between the two countries has made significant progress, there is still enormous potential thanks to the shared production supply chains and participation in Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership.

A win-win situation awaits if both countries continue to take advantage of trade opportunities, he said.

The PM called for more Vietnamese investors to invest in Cambodia, especially in high-tech agriculture, food processing, digital technology, banking and finance, and automobile manufacturing.

He also encouraged Cambodian investors to invest in Vietnam to diversify production, business, and supply chains.

Manet promised to maintainpeace and political stability and to improve the investment and business environment. Cambodia is implementing its Investment Law to simplify administrative procedure andensure transparency and fair competition, he said.

Vietnam PM Pham Minh Chinh agreed with Manet that both countries still have much potential for partnership.

He called for continued investment and trade promotion between the two countries to grow enterprises but also to strengthen and consolidate the friendship between the two nations.

Chinh suggested that businesses and the government of each country should increase partnerships with a focus on institutions, finance, transport infrastructure, power, telecommunications, and tourism.

Both sides need to regularly exchange experiences, support each other in policy formulation, improve the investment and business environment and increase regional competitiveness.

Investors and enterprises should focus their resources and accelerate the implementation of projects to ensure timely completion and quality, he added.

There are currently over 200 Vietnamese projects in Cambodia, with a total registered capital of $2.9 billion.

Cambodia is the second-largest destination for Vietnam's foreign investment among 80 countries and territories. Vietnam has consistently maintained a leading position in ASEAN and is among the top five largest direct investors in Cambodia.


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