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One Belt and One Road: Cambodia and China Should Join Hands to Go Ahead

Copyfrom:The Commercial NewsPost Time:2017-06-23 15:20:34

Promoting cooperation in production capacity, infrastructure construction and other fields should be a priority for China and Cambodia to jointly construct “One Belt and One Road”, said Mr. Xu Ningning, Executive President of China-ASEAN Business Council (CABC), when accepting interview by reporters of The Commercial News and Jian Hua Daily in Phnom Penh. He also said that China and Cambodia should strengthen communications in industry between two sides by enhancing two countries’ industrial docking, to promote Cambodia’s industrial structure adjustment and industrial upgrading. 

China and Cambodia Going Ahead: The Two Countries Have the Advantages to Go Ahead

According to Xu Ningning, China is promoting the construction of “One Belt and One Road” by upholding the principles of co-discussion, co-building and sharing, and “One Belt and One Road” construction will bring new vitality to the world’s economic growth. Therefore, in the construction of “One Belt and One Road”, especially in the construction of “21st Century Maritime Silk Road”, China and Cambodia could actively implement a part of early projects to set a good example for co-building “One Belt and One Road”, as China and Cambodia have the advantages to go ahead and also share good political relations and complimentary economy and trade relationship.

He added that China and Cambodia had reached consensus on a number of projects during Premier Hun Sen’s presence in the “Belt and Road” International Cooperation Forum held in Beijing. And how to carry out the relevant projects as soon as possible and effective involved many aspects.

As he put it, China and Cambodia should strengthen communications in industry between two sides and enhance two countries’ industrial docking, which is conducive to Cambodia’s industrial structure adjustment and industrial upgrading, and is also conducive to Cambodia’s sustainable economic growth. He also said that, China and Cambodia should positively implement the Joint Statement on Production Capacity Cooperation Among Lancang-Mekong Countries to promote infrastructure construction with industry cooperation, which was issued at the First LMC Leaders’ Meeting held in Sanya, Hainan Province in China, in March 2016, and is also the first consensus on industry cooperation among Lancang-Mekong countries. 

Industry Cooperation: Put Emphasis on and Make Good Use of Industrial Chambers & Associations

From Xu Ningning’s opinion, Industry cooperation specifically includes industrial exchanges in industry docking and industry policies. Therefore, both sides could find an industry cooperation focus of complementarity, create a new industrial chain and achieve more trade creation, which will be beneficial to attract more Chinese enterprises to invest in Cambodia. 

He cited as an example that China and Cambodia could promote production capacity cooperation in building materials industry, as Cambodia currently needs large quantities of building materials products while China has production capacity of high quality in this field to offer to Cambodia and the two sides are highly complementary. 

He said that we could play a positive role in industry docking by taking good advantages of both sides relevant industrial chambers & associations’ features’ of flexibility, bridge and network. And industry chambers & associations not only play a role of communication between government and enterprise, but also play a role of communicative bridge among enterprises. 

He proposed that Cambodian comprehensive chambers of commerce and relevant industry chambers & associations should dock with China actively, such as Cambodia Garment Manufacturers Association docking with Chinese textile associations, Cambodia Freight Forwarder Association docking with Chinese relevant logistics associations, and Khmer-Chinese Association In The Kingdom Of Cambodia docking with China-ASEAN Business Council, to play a role of bridge and flexibility and pave the way for the promotion of industry cooperation among governments.  

Industry Docking is the Priority for Two Countries to Construct Maritime Silk Road

Xu Ningning said, it made it more effective to implement some investment projects by enhancing industrial docking between two sides to realize industry cooperation and promote Cambodian industry structure adjustment and industrial upgrading. “Industry docking is conducive to finding an industrial chain that is suitable for two sides’ cooperation, which is beneficial for the appreciation of the industrial chain and to fill industrial space to a certain degree and extend the industrial chain. Hence, industry docking can be said to be the priority for China and Cambodia in the co-construction of Maritime Silk Road.”

Xu Ningning highlighted that China-ASEAN Business Council was organizing a series of industry docking and cooperation activities currently. For instance, he led China-ASEAN Construction Industry Cooperation Committee Entrepreneur Delegation to visit Cambodia, and held a meeting with Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (MLMUPC), Cambodia on June 12 and conducted docking and exchange with Cambodia Constructors Association (CCA) on June 13. 

He introduced that there were more than 20 members of the Delegation to Cambodia, who are chairmen or presidents of over 10 Chinese famous construction enterprises that have been awarded “Luban Prize for China Construction Engineering” for 62 projects. And Luban Prize is an award of highest honor presented to China construction industry projects.  

From the point of Xu Ningning’s view, the fact that the Entrepreneur Delegation visited Cambodia and docked a series of cooperation affairs with Cambodian relevant government and enterprises was believed to play an active part in Cambodia’s future urban renewal, infrastructure construction and other construction fields etc.. Xu Ningning also pointed out that industry docking was the prerequisite of industry cooperation and that China-ASENA Construction Industry Cooperation Committee Entrepreneurs Delegation’s visit to Cambodia was the actual deeds.

Attracting Investment: Support to Hold Cambodian Business Opportunity Promotion Conference in China

Xu Ningning advised Cambodian relevant government departments to attract more Chinese investors. He said that China-ASEAN Business Council (CABC) had worked with Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in the Kingdom of Cambodia to host some business opportunities promotion conferences on investing in Cambodia, and invite representatives of Chinese enterprises and industry chambers & associations to promote Cambodian investment environment and relevant projects. 

Xu Ningning proposed that Cambodian relevant government departments and chambers to carry out activities focused on “business opportunities in Cambodia in the construction of Maritime Silk Road”, to attract Chinese investors, such as going to Chinese eastern regions with the ability to go out, like Guangdong, Jiangsu, Beijing and Shandong etc..

He added that many Chinese enterprises were desired to “go out” and were selecting their targeted countries, so Cambodia should promote business opportunities earlier than other countries, otherwise Chinese enterprises might choose to invest in other countries. “Opportunities can not be obtained by waiting sometimes. Therefore, only by proactive promotion in China can Chinese enterprises with capacity be attracted to Cambodia to seek for their partners. ”

Tourism Cooperation: Chinese and Cambodian Companies with Capacity Work Together

Xu Ningning also proposed to strengthen cooperation between China and Cambodia in the fields of cultural exchanges, including education, youth, tourism, culture and media, to constantly consolidate social foundation for bilateral political relationship and economic cooperation and enhance mutual understanding, thus promoting economic cooperation between two countries.

As for tourism cooperation, Xu Ningning held the view that Cambodia needed to develop more tourism programs, aimed at attracting more Chinese tourists. And he believed that the growth of Chinese visitors to Cambodia would not only bring practical benefits to Cambodian tourism development, but also promote mutual understanding between two countries’ people.

Cooperation Space: Business Opportunities are of Great Potential but with Opportunities and Challenges Co-existing

According to Xu Ningning, "The Belt and Road Initiatives" can bring a lot of opportunities as well as some challenges, part of which are internal challenges from China and Cambodia, such as some enterprises’ poor experience in international cooperation and some government departments’ lack of sense of organization, while part of which are external challenges from regions outside China and Cambodia that would set up barriers to or compete with China and Cambodia.

Therefore, in the construction of “One Belt and One Road”, although there is great cooperation space between China and Cambodia, it is advisable to develop cooperation with sense of organization and combination with the cooperation among government departments, chambers and enterprises, instead of the way to do like stragglers and disbanded soldiers. Only in this way, can the cooperation between Chinese and Cambodian enterprises be more effective, systematic and organized. 

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