Cambodia, India boost human development, trade investment

Cambodia and India are boosting cooperation in human development and trade investment to strengthen relations between the two countries.

The Embassy of India in Phnom Penh is set to hold the 50th anniversary of the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (Itec) programme on Tuesday this week in the capital, according to an Indian embassy release.

The Itec celebration will be presided by Indian Ambassador Manika Jain, government officials and more than 200 prominent Itec alumni from the Kingdom. The Itec programme was launched in 1964 by the Indian government and became a bilateral programme of assistance to 158 developing countries.

Training programmes

Through the various bilateral cooperation programmes under Itec, capacity building was promoted by organising training programmes in such fields as administration, accountancy, governance, IT, banking, information technology, energy, management, tourism and law enforcement, which were targeted at officials of the Kingdom’s ministries and departments.

More than 1,600 Cambodian nationals working in various ministries, departments, autonomous bodies such as the National Bank of Cambodia and Electricite du Cambodge have benefited from the training programmes in the respective field of their work.

Between last year and this year, more than 150 Cambodian nationals have been sent for training courses in multi-disciplinary areas.

During the three-day 4th India-Asean Expo and Summit in the Indian capital New Delhi, last week, Minister of Commerce Pan Sorasak met with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) president Sandip Somany.

Somany expressed interest in investing in various of the Kingdom’s sectors such as science and technology, tourism, infrastructure and the agricultural industry to strengthen and expand bilateral economic cooperation.

While economic and commercial flow between India and Asean has seen growth, bilateral trade between Cambodia and India remains low, said Somany.

Sorasak welcomed the Indian investors’ intention and called for direct flights between the two countries to boost the tourism sector.

Bilateral trade between India and Asean in 2017 reached $73.593 billion last year, a 25.5 per cent increase, Sorasak said. In the same period, foreign direct investment from India to Asean increased from $1.47 billion in 2015 to $1.73 billion in 2017.