Selected Comments Samdech Techo Hun Sen at the “Accreditation Ceremony of Science and Honorary Titles of the Royal Academy of Cambodia” [Unofficial Translation]



Today, on behalf of the Royal Government and myself, it’s my great pleasure to attend this Accreditation Ceremony of Science and Honorary Titles of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, provided to 8 dignitaries and academicians at this moment.

In this wonderful opportunity, I would like congratulate and announce the titles of the 8 dignitaries and academicians who were accredited the science and honorary title of the Royal Academy of Cambodia by His Majesty King Norodom Sihamoni of the Kingdom of Cambodia.

The science titles are conferred to 4 senior academicians including: H.E Dr. Aun Pornmoniroth as “Akka Bandit Sapheacha” and the other 3 academicians including: Dr. Net Barom, Dr. Hean Sahib and Dr. Nath Bunreoun as “Bandit Sapheacha” and appointed as the full membership of the Royal Academy of Cambodia.

The honorary titles are conferred to 4 national dignitaries including: H.E Kitti Setha Bandit Keat Chhon, as “Kitti Borirak Bandit”, H.E Deputy Prime Minister, Men Sam An, as “Kitti Sanghak Bandit”,  H.E Deputy Prime Minister, Ben Chhin, as “Kitti Nitik Koasol Bandit”, and H.E Senior Minister Cham Prasidh, as “Kitti Setha Bandit”.

As H.E Academician, Sok Toch, President of the Royal Academy of Cambodia has highlighted earlier, the 8 science and honorary academicians have absolutely achieved sufficient masterpieces and qualifications to deserve the noble title of our nation.  This accreditation is the significant contribution to strengthening and expanding the scientific research of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, which is perceived as the Think Tank of the Royal Government, the institution of thinkers, the visionary to address national issues based on scientific principles, the academicians mobilizing center with full of intellectual and research experience in order to increase human capital and contribute to national development.

I would like express my high evaluation to the management at all levels of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, who have put effort in developing this institution to be remarkably and subsequently progressive.  I strongly hope that the Royal Academy of Cambodia will make further effort as the academic institution to contribute in regional and global affairs, relating to scientific research and counseling on the development of society, economy, politics, and international affairs for the Royal Government in every circumstance.

At the present time, Cambodia is enjoying the development and prosperity in all sectors, especially economic sector which has achieved high growth of 7% per annum.  During the last 20 years, while achieving the full peace throughout the country, Cambodia has also identified the long term vision in expediting the diversification of economic growth foundation, promoting more competitiveness, increasing productivity and value add in the global value chain, and enhancing the resilience to crisis in order to turn Cambodia into the upper middle income country by 2030 and higher income country by 2050.

With this firm willingness, Cambodia is still confronting a number of challenges, while the world is situated in the current of globalization, which is developing very fast, particularly on the technology and science, the variation of the new global development poles, the trend of urbanization, the climate change, the cross border terrorism, and the emergence of war at some areas.  Therefore, with the purpose to enable our society to catch up with the evolving circumstances of technology and science, maximize the benefits from the new development poles, develop the human capital, increase the productivity, strengthen the peace and social harmony, Cambodia needs to strongly encourage more scientific research for Cambodia’s way forward, and the solutions to address the big challenges of the nation with sustainable and efficient development.

The scientific research brings more innovations for contributing in national development, the response to the rapid change of the recent regional and global economic structure that Cambodia need to be more active and aware of the evolution of those issues and solutions in every aspect at the sub-regional, regional and global level, particularly the issue, which impact the benefit of Cambodia, and in the course of increasing the benefit of the nation.  In fact, the research and the researchers with scientific knowledge, talent and virtue are very significant for Cambodia and the scientific research is the main role of the Royal Academy of Cambodia.

In this spirit, I hope that the accreditors who receive these priceless titles and many other Cambodian academicians across the country will jointly contribute in serving our nation referring to building a Cambodian society with peace, stability, social order, sustainable and equitable development with sealing cells, highly knowledgeable people and in-depth culture, and better and harmonious livelihood in both society and family.

[Start of Selected Off-the-Cuff Comments]

Trade Way Imminent

Before ending this speech, I should take this moment to speak a little more to our scientists and researchers. A new situation that is standing before us is a fully blown trade war and in just days ahead implementation will start. It is for the first time in history that the G7 countries are in confrontation. In the recent meeting in Canada, the US seemed to have walked away from the other six countries. Trade war has also been happening between the US and China, the US and Mexico, and also between the US and India. We will foresee responses in the time to come.

What impacts will there be for us? For regional and world economy? Should this really happen, no one will be left in favor. I can foresee that it is lose-lose game in the world. Should there be no justifications, this trade war will surely cause danger to the world. This issue requires our intellectuals and leaders to conduct thorough studies on possible impacts should there be on our country and economy. We need to have sufficient knowledge to propose policies choices in conformity to given contexts. It is not a small problem.

Bring Down Price of Electricity – A Policy in the Sixth Legislative Term

We have seen that tension in the Korean peninsula eases but we also see that new world issues arise. They are challenging ones for regional and world economies. Increasing of taxation will in the end bring to bear on end users/consumers. On this particular point, we need to foresee those impacts. What solutions should we take up to resolve those issues, as we already conducted studies relating to Cambodia’s completion for foreign investments?

We have discovered that price of electricity in Cambodia is still high and we need to carry out a thorough study on possibility of lowering prices of electricity for people’s consumption and for attracting and promoting industrial development. I have noted that the committee for economic policy led by HE Akka Bandit Sapheacha Aun Pornmoniroth has already made a step forward in its study of this issue and I will figure out framing it as our policy for the forthcoming sixth legislative term.

As prices of oil in international markets are going up, there are also impacts on us. On forthcoming 28 June 2018, I will proclaim certain principles relating to oil price in Cambodian markets to alleviate impacts from high prices of oil (which has partly been caused by) the so called limited production of oil by OPEC […]

Roles and Duties of RAC

Relating to this issue, I wish to remind about role of the Royal Academy of Cambodia and duties of our intellectuals. It is true that we have many topics to cover (not just about trade and oil) but I demand that we give priority to urgent matters. We cannot afford to devote our limited knowledge and resources on every issues at one time. There would not be good responses. We must therefore concentrate and decide which issues are to deal first and later. Having said that does not mean that we abandon other works to just focus on this topic. It is a matter of prioritizing it according to urgency and order of interest.

I hope that intellectuals – those who are bestowed with titles today and those else in the Kingdom of Cambodia – will participate and generate inputs for researches relating to current regional and world issues, (with possible impacts on Cambodia). Take for instance, facing now, it is not just a traditional trade war. We have also seen that in other regions and the world, wars of all sorts – terrorism, climate change, etc. have become hot topics that we need to acquire a good understanding and set out ways to deal with them, for the benefits of our county, region, and the world […]

[End of Off-the-Cuff Comments]

With the congratulation to the 8 national dignitaries and senior academicians who have been conferred these titles, I would like to wish Samdech, Excellencies, Academicians, Professors, Ladies and Gentlemen, and all Participants the four gems of Buddhist blessing: Longevity, Nobility, Healthiness and Strength.