Cambodia-Australia Partnership Forges Ahead

Cambodia-Australia Partnership Forges Ahead

On May 13, 2024, H.E. Hem Vanndy, Minister of Industry, Science, Technology & Innovation, received a delegation from the Australian Embassy to Cambodia, led by Chargé d’Affaires Pablo Kang. The meeting discussed strengthening existing partnerships and exploring opportunities for further collaboration between MISTI and Australia.

During the meeting, H.E. Kang reiterated Australia’s commitment to fostering cooperation with MISTI, particularly emphasising ongoing support for Cambodia’s development endeavours, notably through the CAPRED program.

He highlighted Australia’s broad support for MISTI, spanning diverse sectors from water supply to quality infrastructure. Australia has provided technical assistance and allocated approximately AU$10 million as a seed fund for the establishment of the Water Development Fund, aimed at improving water management practices and address climate impacts, particularly on water sources.

He said Australia is also committed to supporting the enhancement of Cambodia’s lab capabilities, particularly in agri-food testing, to ensure food safety and quality. With a dedicated budget of AU$1.8 million, Australia aims to bolster consumer confidence in the domestic market.

Minister Vanndy welcomed the good collaboration between both parties thus far. He outlined the new government’s priority agenda, including launch of the National Strategy for Developing the Informal Economy. He stressed ongoing collaboration with relevant ministries and institutions to develop a robust onboarding system, streamline registration processes, and develop benefit packages for formalization.

Minister Vanndy shared his vision for ensuring access to potable water, advocating for reforms such as licensing and the need for aggregation among small private water operators to enhance efficiency and effectiveness in water supply management.

He highlighted the ministry’s own reforms, including strengthening the national laboratory to bolster domestic testing capabilities, aiming to reduce reliance on overseas testing facilities. He said collaboration with international partners like Australia is crucial to strengthen Cambodia’s lab capabilities.

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Source: The Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology & Innovation