From World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland

[Unofficial translation]


Here followed are some selected synopsis of Samdech Techo Hun Sen’s working visit to Switzerland and participation in the World Economic Forum.

Meeting Professor Klaus Schwab, 20 January 2017

After having lunch at about 14:15, Samdech Techo Hun Sen proceeded to a meeting and discussion with Professor Klaus Schwab, founder and Chairman of World Economic Forum (WEF) in the Congress Centre. While offering warm welcome the presence of Samdech Techo and thanking for leading delegation to WEF in 2017 in Davos, Switzerland, Professor Klaus Schwab informed Samdech Techo of his visit to Cambodia during the time when Cambodia hosts WEF on ASEAN in coming May. Thanking Professor Klaus Schwab and colleagues for assisting Cambodia to host WEF on ASEAN, Samdech Techo expressed pleasure to work with them to ensure success of the meeting.

Concerning the WEF on ASEAN, the Royal Government of Cambodia decided to (1) charge no fee on visas, (2) charge no fee on tickets for traveling from Phnom Penh to the province of Siem Reap, and (3) charge no fees on foreign speakers and economists, to participate in the WEF on ASEAN in Cambodia, for visiting its ancient temples. Samdech Techo expressed enthusiasm to see the WEF on ASEAN concluded with successes, unforgettable meaning among participants, and safe stay in Cambodia. The organization of the WEF in Cambodia in the time to come is to celebrate the 50th anniversary and the future prospect of ASEAN.

In the same afternoon, Samdech Techo joined with other leaders to attend the forum on “Is ASEAN a Community Yet?” It was the last program of the WEF in Davos, Switzerland.

ASEAN Highway in a World of Division, 20 January 2017

On 20 January 2017, Samdech Techo Hun Sen attended a lunch break organized by the WEF in Congress Centre, Pischa. Leaders attended the session took part in the discussion on “ASEAN Highway in a World of Division.” A number of important points brought in for discussions were (1) raise awareness on objectives of integrating ASEAN and why ASEAN scored successes, (2) Lessons Learned from ASEAN Experiences, (3) In Search of ASEAN Potential (ASEAN + 3) for regional integration of Asia and the Pacific.

In Q&A session, Samdech Techo revealed his thoughts about “what are choices of ASEAN for its departure? And about ASEAN Highway or ASEAN Road.” Without hesitation, Samdech Techo reaffirmed Cambodia’s stand to continue with the ASEAN road. He expressed unfaltering belief on current development approach of ASEAN and promotion of visionary implementation and planned integration to create “one big and most important market” in Asia that will guarantee high competition with equitability in the development and full integration to the world, where everyone will hold one ASEAN identity […]

Finding Way to Help Kuntha Bopha Paediatric Hospital, 20 January 2017

In his own words, Samdech Techo said in Facebook on 18 January 2017 – “after a meeting with the Prime Minister of Sweden, I tried to walk on a distance of about 300 meters. Again, on 19 January 2017, I took a car to see the President of Switzerland. After the meeting, I tried again to walk home from her residence in a cold weather … Well, if everyone can do it, we also can. Though the weather was unbearably cold, the cooperation discussion between Cambodia and Switzerland was very warm and mutually beneficial to the two countries.”

“In our discussion, I did not forget to raise to the President’s attention issues of immigration that people flee war in the Middle East and seek shelters in Europe as results of the so-called colour revolution. Together with Madame the President of Switzerland,” Samdech Techo wrote, “We have sought ways to help the Kuntha Bopha hospital to continue to help Cambodian children better.”

Let me send a message to Global Witness and their likes to stop being fools. The President and Prime Minister are working with each other in a normal state-to-state relation manner. They should learn more …

ASEAN 50 Years: What Next? Building an ASEAN Economic Community by 2025, 19 January 2017

On 19 January 2017, in a working dinner at the Central Sport Hotel, Saumerstube, on “ASEAN in 50 Years: What Next?” participated by many heads of states, Samdech Techo gave his closing speech after the opening session by the Prime Minister of Vietnam, a Q&A session facilitated by representative of the University of Singapore and three other private companies. Some leaders also shared some important points in their speeches.

Samdech Techo, in that evening, set out an ambitious vision for building the ASEAN Economic Community by 2025 as highly integrated and cohesive economy. It embodies four major characteristics (1) a common market and production base, (2) a region with high economic competition, (3) a region where there is equitable development, and (4) a region fully integrated into the world economy, and every nation takes a common ASEAN identity.

To realize the vision, Samdech Techo Hun Sen said, ASEAN must focus on (1) strengthening and expanding cooperation to guarantee security, safety and full stability; (2) continuing firm, balanced, sustainable and inclusive economic growth; (3) realizing “the master plan on 2025 ASEAN connectivity”; (4) realizing quickly “the agreement on regional comprehensive economic partnership”; and (5) promoting central role of ASEAN in regional cooperation and strengthening ASEAN capability to resolve challenging regional and world issues.

Cambodia-Switzerland Relations Closer Than Ever, 19 January 2017

On 19 January 2017, Samdech Techo Hun Sen conducted bilateral discussion with Doris Leuthard, President of the Swiss Confederation. The Cambodia-Switzerland relations started forty years ago and has now been closer than ever. Madame the President welcome Samdech Techo and appreciated progresses that Cambodia has made. She acknowledge efforts made by Samdech Techo to achieve fruitful results.

Samdech Techo Hun Sen thanked the Government of Switzerland for assisting and providing assistance in areas of de-mining, health and the court to try the Khmer Rouge leaders. Samdech Techo proposed the two countries’ trade, which is standing at over 30 million USD, to grow bigger. Working groups of the two countries on foreign trade will continue to discuss on this issue and will promote private sector to increase participation i.e. exporting quality products of Switzerland to Cambodia and from Cambodia such as rice back to Switzerland.

Samdech Techo acknowledged and thanked Doctor Beat Richner for his active participation in improving healthcare in Cambodia, especially with the support provided by the Swiss President. That is an expression of heart and mind of the Swiss people to the people of Cambodia. Recently, the Royal Government of Cambodia decided to deduct two USD from every ticket sold for a visit to the temples of Angkor for the sake of financing further to the (paediatric) hospital of Kuntha Bopha. Samdech Techo also appreciated Switzerland as the ASEAN sectoral dialogue partner and sought Swiss support to continue to provide training of human resource for Cambodia.

The President of the Swiss Confederation thanked Samdech Techo for recognizing, supporting and providing financial assistance to efforts to help the Kuntha Bopha (paediatric) hospital by Dr. Beat Richner. The Government of Switzerland provides roughly four million USD for the hospital and another two million USD for Cambodia’s hospital supporting women, mother and children. While promising to urge more Swiss to visit Cambodia, the Swiss President will continue to provide assistance that will strengthen food security to farmers and encourage them to diversify cropping pattern more than just rice. Switzerland will continue to provide capacity building for the Cambodian National Assembly as requested.

On behalf of HM the King of Cambodia, Samdech Techo Hun Sen invited the President of the Swiss Confederation to visit Cambodia at a convenient time and sought out her support to urge more Swiss investors to participate in the World Economic Forum on ASEAN that is to take place in May 2017 in Cambodia […]

A Meeting with Bank of America Director in Hong Kong, 19 January 2017

While conducting a working visit to Davos, Switzerland, Samdech Techo Hun Sen allowed a meeting with Ms Margaret Ren, Director of Bank of America to Hong Kong. Ms Margaret Ren showed great impression on Cambodia, especially its support on the project of “One Belt, One Road” for investment in Cambodia. In May 2017, there will be a meeting in relation to mechanism of the “One Belt, One Road,” through which she will make efforts to urge investors to conduct their investments feasibility study in Cambodia on energy, construction and financial sectors. She also informed Samdech Techo of an American company to use advanced digital equipment to study soil and water for agricultural purpose in Cambodia.

Samdech Techo Hun Sen welcomes the good idea of Ms Margaret Ren and interests expressed by various investment companies on open-door policies set out by the Royal Government of Cambodia investors from everywhere. Cambodia used a part of from “One Belt, One Road” fund for implementation of a number of projects such as building express roads between Phnom Penh and Preah Sihanouk province, the Siem Reap Airport, Special Economic Zone of Preah Sihanouk city, and many others. Samdech Techo Hun Sen extended invitation to the Bank of America Director to participate in the World Economic Forum on ASEAN in Cambodia in May 2017.

A New Vision for Agriculture, 18 January 2017

On 18 January 2017, Samdech Techo Hun Sen attended the working lunch session organized by the World Food Program (WFP) theming “A New Vision for Agriculture: Building and Strengthening Multilateral Partnership” at Jakobshorn, Davos. Also participated were top leaders of industries, partnering countries, and developed countries, international organizations, civil societies, farmers and experts to indicate progresses and define strategic multilateral partnership in mobilizing supports. Issues brought forward for discussion were (1) what are the lessons learned in partners countries in Africa and Asia, (2) Whether there are any repercussions from emerging opportunity in India and Latin America to changes of market-based agriculture, (3) How can form of concerned multilateral partners supporting new vision for agriculture influence those opportunities.

Samdech Techo talked about efforts to raise high agricultural production in numerous countries with high agricultural potential in Asia, Africa and Latin America would contribute significantly to guaranteeing world food security through increasing quantity of food and reducing its price to a moderate level. To achieve this, Samdech Techo said, we must carry out some works (1) paying attention to water resource management, (2) providing and transferring technical expertise to farmers, and (3) providing low-cost agricultural input for farmers, especially oil and other energy sources. The Royal Government of Cambodia highly appreciated the Grow Asia and Grow Africa Initiatives of the World Economic Forum. It seeks to encourage expanding partnership with every players concerned in expediting regional and world development./.