The land of heroes
Our heroes
Our land
Cambodia Kingdom

Thursday, November 04, 2010

China, Cambodia reaffirm to cement all-round partnership

PHNOM PENH, Nov. 4 (Xinhua) -- China and Cambodia on Thursday underscored their commitment to developing their all-round cooperative partnership.

The pledge came out of the hour-long talks between top Chinese legislator Wu Bangguo and President of Cambodian National Assembly Heng Samrin in Phnom Penh Thursday morning.

Heng Samrin first extended a warm welcome to Wu, chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC) of China, the country's top legislature.

Heng Samrin hailed Wu's four-day visit to Cambodia as important and far-reaching for bilateral all-round cooperative partnership.

Wu said China-Cambodia relationship had withstood the test of changes in international arena and taken on vigor and vitality since the two countries forged diplomatic ties in 1958.

We characterized China-Cambodia relationship as a paradigm of how countries can sincerely work together, citing strong political trust, rapidly-growing economic cooperation, increasing exchanges in all fields and close coordination on international issues.

Looking to the future, Wu proposed the two countries maintain exchanges between high-ranking officials, deepen political trust and consolidate traditional friendship.

He called for the two countries to step up trade and economic cooperation and seek joint development on the principle of equality and mutual benefit.

Wu said China encouraged its businesses to work more closely with Cambodian companies, play their part in Cambodian infrastructure construction, agricultural development and economic development zones.

He appealed for both sides to explore new ways of cooperation and provide quality services in a bid to bring trade and economic ties to a new high.

On the international front, Wu urged the two countries to step up coordination and cooperation on international and regional issues, promote the relations between China and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), work more closely in combating cross-border crimes and terrorism.

Wu and Heng highlighted the stronger cooperation between the NPC and Cambodian National Assembly.

Wu proposed more exchanges among legislative leaders, specialized commissions and working bodies of both legislatures on state administration, legislation and supervision.

Heng Samrin agreed with Wu's proposal, saying Cambodian National Assembly would keep close exchanges with the NPC at all levels and make positive contribution to bilateral relations.

Heng said Cambodia would adhere to the one-China policy and support China's peaceful reunification.

Later Thursday morning, Wu also met with Cambodian Senate President Chea Sim on bilateral relations.

During his stay in Cambodia, Wu will also call on Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni and meet with Prime Minister Hun Sen. A package of deals on China-Cambodia economic cooperation will be signed during Wu's visit.

Cambodia is the first leg of Wu's three-nation visit to Southeast Asia, which will also take him to Indonesia and Thailand.
Read more!

Cambodia, China announce 1.6billion dollar deal: officials

PHNOM PENH (AFP) - – China will inject 1.6 billion dollars into Cambodian infrastructure over five years, officials said Thursday, just days after the US urged the country not to become too dependent on the Asian giant.

"Within the next five years, Cambodia and China will have 23 co-operation projects," government spokesman Khieu Kanharith told reporters after a meeting between China's top legislator Wu Bangguo and the Cambodian Prime Minister, Hun Sen.

Hydropower dams, mining projects, bridges and railway links would be among the initiatives funded by China between 2010 and 2015, he added.

At their meeting in Phnom Pehn, Wu and Hun Sen witnessed the signing of 16 deals, including a loan agreement arranged by the Bank of China that will see Cambodia's largest mobile operator CamGSM borrow over 590 million dollars.

China also plans to help Cambodia build a new railway to neighbouring Vietnam, providing one of the last missing links for a pan-Asian network that would connect Singapore with China's Kunming by train, according to the spokesman.

He said Wu also promised to boost Chinese direct investment in the kingdom, which so far this year stands at 610 million dollars.

Wu's visit to Cambodia comes just days after US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a high-profile appearance in the country and urged Cambodians not to become "too dependent" on China.

Khieu Kanharith said Wu hailed the "fast growing ties" between the two countries and told Hun Sen that "China does not want to seek power and become the owner of the region".

China -- a former patron of the Khmer Rouge regime, which oversaw the deaths of up to two million people in the 1970s -- is the country's top donor, according to Cambodia.

Nearly 400 Chinese companies have invested billions of dollars in Cambodia, including key infrastructure projects such as hydropower dams and coal power plants.

But China's involvement in the country has not been without controversy.

A December 2009 decision by Cambodia to deport 20 Uighurs, a largely Muslim minority group in western China -- despite their application for UN refugee status -- came ahead of a 1.2 billion dollar aid and loan package from Beijing.

China has rejected accusations that the generous package was linked to the move.

Read more!

Cambodia maintains distance on Myanma poll

The Cambodian government has adopted a wait-and-see approach to the upcoming elections in Myanmar, amid mounting criticism of a process many observers see as a charade to legitimise military rule.

Koy Kuong, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said the government hoped the elections, scheduled for Sunday, would be carried out in a “democratic and transparent” manner.
“We don’t know about the other reactions, the comments from other countries, but the Cambodian government hopes that the elections will be democratic,” he said.

Critics have dismissed the vote as a sham process designed to entrench military rule, and say it cannot be credible while it excludes opposition leader and Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, who remains under house arrest.

According to electoral rules passed in March, a quarter of the seats in the country’s proposed parliament will be reserved for hand-picked military candidates, while opposition parties toil under a wide range of restrictions, including bans on ex-political prisoners running as candidates.
Koy Kuong said he could not comment on the plight of Suu Kyi, adding that the issue was Myanmar’s “internal affair”.

Cambodia’s hands-off attitude reflects that of ASEAN’s member states, most of whom have been reluctant to criticise the junta over its preparations for the poll.

Only the Philippines has come out in open opposition to the process, describing it at the 17th ASEAN Summit in Hanoi last month as a “farce to democratic values of transparency”.

Opposition Sam Rainsy Party lawmaker Mu Sochua said despite ASEAN’s much-mooted policy of mutual non-interference, ASEAN nations should take a firm stance against polls she said had been gutted by the “elimination” of the political opposition in Myanmar.

“If Cambodia wants to be recognised as a democratic country, we must ask the government of Cambodia to point out the shortfalls of the preparations for the elections in Myanmar,” she said.
Read more!