Selected Comments Samdech Techo Hun Sen at the Graduation and Diploma Presenting Ceremony of the Human Resources University

[Unofficial Tranlsation]

Human Resource Becomes First Priority

[…] It has been a rare opportunity for Cambodia to have peace. With this hard-won peace, we have chances to develop Cambodia, in which Human resources has become one of the highest priorities. We have started with four words – water, road, electricity, and human resource to indicate our order of priorities for investments. We used the four words to indicate our priority areas for developments. In the fifth legislative term National Assembly Royal Government, we have reordered human resource to precede the four priorities. This reordering has pointed out for us to see how much now we have focused on human resource training, especially when the ASEAN Economic Community has become a reality.

Tomorrow I will leave for the ASEAN Summit. Minister of Education, Youth, and Sports HE Hang Chuon Naron will also join me in this trip because he is chairing the social and cultural community. ASEAN has three pillars – politics and security, led by Ministers of Foreign Affairs; Economics, led by Ministers of Trade, and social and cultural affairs, for Cambodia, we have chosen the Minister of Education, Youth, and Sports as President.

Looking for External Job Markets

In the framework of AEC, flows of goods, services, and human resources, require skilled labors. To be able to work in foreign countries or not requires capacity or we cannot compete with locals. People may understand that it has been great efforts by the Royal Government to achieve external job markets for our people. We have been doing many works to get our workers legal status to reside and work in Thailand. We do the same in Malaysia […]

We are seeking for jobs in numerous other countries. As I said the other days, we have now 40,000 workers in South Korea. It has been a tough competition among many countries for jobs there. Yesterday, in my discussion with the Prime Minister of Vietnam, I learnt that there are now 130,000 Vietnamese workers in South Korea. Thai also has many. We should look at the work availability beyond our border thanks to regional integration and relations that we have made with other countries. We are working to get more jobs in some countries in the Middle East for our Muslim community […]

Family Incomes from External Job Markets

Aside from incomes made by workers in factories and enterprises in Cambodia, which is billion of US dollars, we also have in-flow of income that our workers are sending to their families. They are our national revenue. The Philippines has sent so many workers abroad. Some people have come in with comments that “before they know it, Cambodians have become waged workers for other countries.” What do you say when we have over 8,000 Philippines workers in Cambodia? They are welcome […]

Improve Capacity to Respond to Development Demands

We will need to have skills and capacity. When I visited Timor-Leste, I met with our people who are working as technical advisors for organizations, including the United Nations, there. I also met one Cambodian working for World Bank, while I was in Singapore. The World Bank sends him for a job in the Philippines. That is what I wanted Cambodia to become. I wanted Cambodia to be able to participate and many of our citizens will have chances to work for various UN organizations or international organizations. However, we must first strengthen our skills and capacity in order to respond ably to those sorts of jobs.

Knowledge Is the Best Property to Give

I have noticed happily that we have been making a stark difference from the time we commenced. In those days, we had to send many students, current Ministers of Education, Youth, and Sports and Economy and Finance included, for their studies in the former Soviet Union. Former generations have made efforts for the later generations to grow and attain capacity to do jobs. We are doing that from one generation to the next. There is nothing better and long lasting than delivering knowledge. Parents may have some properties for their children but without access to knowledge, they would have done a mistake.

People can lose money in many different ways, gambling or fire, etc. However, people would not lose knowledge they have. Pol Pot tortured people physically and mentally, however, they could not remove knowledge and skills from them. It is in this note that I am calling on our state, families and each individual to make further efforts. From the part of a state, we have made it possible now for the country and family to grow because of peace. We have transformed our country from one with many rules to one under one Constitution, King, the Royal Government, and the armed forces […]

Would not Leave Youth/Children in Despair

(From my travels to provinces) I have seen that what we have achieved in the field of education in Mondulkiri is no less than in Phnom Penh. We have been able to ensure equal chance for our youth and children in education. It has not been by chance that we scored such achievement. I used to say that I would not leave Cambodian youth and children in despair as when I was their ages. I had to part away from my parents at 13 years old to continue my study (in Phnom Penh, where I stayed with Buddhist monks). Our major issue now is how to encourage parents and superintendants to send their children to schools and we are increasing investments in education.

We are putting in more new school buildings. We need more schools because of there is real growing demand out there. Some families had allowed their children to drop out of school to help with their works. We need to raise their awareness of importance of education for their children. However, now people at younger age are not as desperate as I was […] for knowledge and know-how, you must make efforts. We now have better chance ever because we have peace, infrastructure and school buildings throughout the country […]

Authorities to Respond to Natural Disaster

Please allow me to make an appeal to local authorities of all levels and the armed forces to be prepared and get ready to respond to natural disaster as we had come across in the last few days. This year, the weather condition seems to have been a menace and creates our people in some regions many hardships. According to weather forecast, the first typhoon Muifa is on the move. Each country has rights to name two typhoons. Now Muifa is in the Philippines but it seems that Muifa will weaken in the sea. However, in Cambodia, we have a clash of weather between hot and cold temperatures that is very hard to imagine. We are anticipating, according to Water Resource and Meteorology Minister, HE Lim Kean Hor, there will be strong winds and lightning on 28 and 29 April in Cambodia.

[…] I am calling on concerned authorities to be vigilant and prepared, to respond with immediate interventions in impacted areas, along with assistance provided by the Cambodian Red Cross and their local offices everywhere. Where such bad weather impacts caused human death or injuries, and/or damages of housing, they would need intervention to help with the housing reconstruction and/or whatever that the real situation of the place demands. I would seek Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces to issue orders to local forces to get ready to help people in cases of emergency. Last year we had this calamity of drying water sources and we had to provide people with drinking water. This year, rainy season seems to have come early.

On this occasion, I would ask the media – traditional or online, to provide news on weather condition to our people so that they will be informed. Many of our people are using smart phones and they have access to internet too. They would be able to know as soon as the news is available […]

Cambodia Asks for the 2002 Repatriation Agreement

There is one other thing that I have to elaborate. The Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation have already elaborated to a certain extent, days ago, concerning the Repatriation Agreement between Cambodia and the United States of America. It was about deportation of Cambodians who are permanent residents in the US to Cambodia if they are convicted of felony. Some people said that Cambodia annulled the agreement between Cambodia and the US unilaterally. We do not annul it but ask for amendment on the Agreement on ground of humanity and human rights. It is a sad thing.

You may think about this with me. Being jailed in the US was one thing but when they are sent to Cambodia away from their families who are in the US, what do you think? It is a separation. It is indeed one of the basic human rights. We wish to amend the point. It is a life separation. It is immoral. I hope the US administration understand the good will of the Royal Government of Cambodia. We are not asking to annul the agreement, especially the point relating to article 98 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal, but we seek to make an amendment on deportation of felony convicted Cambodians who permanent residents in the US to Cambodia. We consider this a family separation of our people […]

This is to inform our people so that they clearly understand the issue. I have offered you background information, and its evolvement now. I hope (the United States of) America, father of democracy and human rights will consider our request for amendment of the Repatriation Agreement between Cambodia and the United States of America to allow felony convicted Cambodians with permanent residences in the US to stay on and close to their families in the US, should they be deported back. They should not receive punishment for their whole lives […]./.