India’s Ambassador to Cambodia Devyani Khobragade met Minister of Public Works and Transport Sun Chanthol to discuss the two countries’ deep and growing relationship and identify sectors primed to expand with the use of a $1 billion line of credit offered by India to all ASEAN countries.
According to the Indian embassy in Phnom Penh, Khobragade discussed aid for projects that would further link India and Cambodia with the potential construction of roads through Vietnam and Thailand.
She suggested building eastward expansions of the India-Myanmar-Thailand Trilateral Highway into Cambodia via Laos and building more roads to connect Vietnam and Thailand.
Chanthol was receptive to the idea, saying a physical link to India would enhance trade and increase people-to-people exchanges between the two countries.
He added that he would assign ministerial officials to research potential infrastructure projects to make this idea a reality utilising the $1 billion line of credit.
Khobragade discussed improving infrastructure, human resources development and social affairs in Cambodia by using a $100 million fund provided by India through the ASEAN-India Fund framework.
At the meeting, Chanthol extolled the benefits of the Techo Sen Institute of Public Health and Transportation which is geared towards training Cambodian engineers as the country works to develop the economy and society. The technical institute, which trains high school graduates in sectors such as transport and logistics, opened on Jan 22.
Khobragade and Chanthol reflected on India and Cambodia’s relationship over the years, with the ambassador applauding Cambodia’s efforts to mitigate the effects of Covid-19.
The Indian ambassador highlighted India’s goodwill efforts in the past, including initiatives under the Quick Impact Projects Scheme, which have included the construction of schools and improvements in the tourism and health sectors.
Chanthol said future projects under the scheme would include refurbishing 11 healthcare centres in Kandal province. The minister added he directed his officials to research the potential of creating engineering training courses and leadership training courses under India’s Technical and Economic Cooperation Programme.