PHNOM PENH, Jan. 25 (Xinhua) -- China is a key contributor to Cambodia's socioeconomic development and poverty reduction, Cambodian Economy and Finance Ministry's Standing Secretary of State Vongsey Vissoth said here on Wednesday.
"China is the largest source of FDIs (Foreign Direct Investments) to Cambodia, accounting for 42 percent of total FDIs to the country," he said at a forum on Cambodia's economic outlook for 2023.
"China has played a key role in the investments in Cambodia's industries, agriculture, tourism, construction and real estate, and transport infrastructure," he added.
China is also a major trading partner of Cambodia and one of the potential markets for Cambodian products, Vissoth said, adding that the world's second-largest economy is also the largest provider of Official Development Assistance (ODA) to Cambodia.
Meanwhile, the official said China's optimization of its COVID-19 strategy early this month would give a boost to tourism and economic growth in Cambodia and in the world.
"China was the main source of foreign tourists to Cambodia in the pre-COVID-19 pandemic era, but during the pandemic, the number of Chinese tourists to Cambodia had sharply declined," he said. "So, China's reopening will be a good opportunity for us to attract Chinese tourists to Cambodia again."
Ky Sereyvath, director-general of the Institute of China Studies at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said Chinese ODA and investment have played a crucial role in supporting Cambodia's socioeconomic development and poverty reduction, creating hundreds of thousands of jobs for Cambodians.
China-funded mega-projects such as roads, bridges, airports, hydropower plants, economic zones, national stadium and expressway have provided and will continue to provide great benefits to Cambodia and its people, he told Xinhua. ■