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Cambodia, China draft plans for cooperation under Belt and Road Initiative

Updated: Feb 23,2017 9:13 AM     Xinhua

PHNOM PENH — Cambodian and Chinese officials met at Phnom Penh on Feb 22 to devise plans for cooperation under the framework of the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative.

The Cambodian delegation was led by Economy and Finance Ministry Secretary of State Vongsey Vissoth, while the Chinese side was headed by Xiao Weiming, deputy director of the western development division of the China’s National Development and Reform Commission.

According to a statement from the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the meeting came after the two countries signed a Memorandum of Understanding on the implementation of bilateral cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative during a visit of President Xi Jinping to Cambodia in October 2016.

The Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road initiative, proposed by China in 2013, aims to build a trade and infrastructure network connecting Asia with Europe and Africa along the ancient trade routes.

“Cambodia highly values the bilateral cooperation between the two countries under the Belt and Road Initiative,” Vissoth said, adding that the cooperation would provide great benefits to Cambodia in socio-economic development for medium and long terms.

He said the cooperation under the initiative would play a role as the new engine of growth for the region and the world, and benefit both China and the participating countries.

According to the statement, cooperation under the Belt and Road Initiative would focus on seven priority sectors: infrastructure, agriculture, capacity building, special economic zone development, culture and tourism, finance, and eco-environmental protection.

The drafted plans for bilateral cooperation would be submitted to the governments of the two countries for approval in May.

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