Selected Comments Samdech Moha Bovor Thipadei Hun Manet, at the graduation and inauguration ceremony of the Faculty of Economics, Digital Technology, National University of Management [Unofficial Translation]



(1) Education is for the present and the future

This is the first (diploma handout) program for me after the establishment of the Royal Government, and in this new role, I came to meet the students in the graduation program […] this is our common achievement […] firstly, it is the achievement scored by the main characters – the students themselves […] learning is not a process of realizing it in one day but in years […] in which period, there are numerous challenges in terms of jobs, living condition, as well as other situations […]

No one is happier than their parents […] for whom, no matter how grown up we are, or how old we are, we are still children for them. In this regard, the fact that their children have accomplished in education to make another step in the process of their life is a great pride for them […] especially for those who has their first child in the family line or for many generations graduated from higher education […]

That more than 5,000 human resources have graduated and reached the next level of qualification building is the common achievement of our nation […] the strong pride of a nation depends on its strong people. Education is for the present and the future. Current capacity building is to build more achievements for the future […]


(2) National University of Management (NUM) plans digital technology training

The Rector presented the future plans of NUM to organize and strengthen the training of digital technology […] in the 41 years of the NUM’s establishment, first established in 1983 as the Institute of Economics, to date, the school has trained more than 60,000 human resources as capital for the nation and is continuing to play an increasingly important role by expanding its branches for future human resources focused on technology and digital training […]


(3) Knowledge is power – more confidence and options

Building a healthy and highly educated human resource […] and for them to get a degree signifies the efforts that one has made to absorb knowledge, firstly, it improves the students’ competitive level. What does that mean? Cambodia adheres to a free-market system and competition or employment requires the qualifications of human resources […] secondly, (diploma certifies that students can) have higher self-ownership. We can think, we can turn our thoughts into things and we can do a lot […] this is what we say knowledge is power. We have the knowledge, we can plan, we can walk on our own, do more ourselves and increase self-confidence […]; and (higher education degree) gives us more options too […]

(4) Brain gaps easier to close than infrastructure or technology gaps

In the 1960s and 1970s, we ran fast compared to some countries in the region. From 1970 to 1975, wars broke out, we stumbled as our neighbors continued to make advancement […] we ran out of resources, and millions of people died. Then, in 1979, we faced war and economic sanctions altogether. At the end of the war, we started running again and now we can join the ring of competition. We are not up to par yet with neighbors, but the gap is getting smaller. The key point is human resources. Brain gaps are easier to close than technology infrastructure gaps […]

(5) Men fight and die no more but learn and increase skills

We stop wasting money to buy weapons for war. Our full-force human resources are fighting and dying no more on the battlefield, but come to learn, increase capacity, improve all skills in all fields […] land that used to be under mines, we liberate them for agriculture, agroindustry (purpose). Broken bridges that used to cut us off, we rebuild them and build infrastructure and human resources that enable us to grow and become more competitive. Our human resources are not bad either when there is an opportunity […] Cambodia aims to become a rich country by 2050 […] I said to His Excellency Antonio Guterres (the UN Secretary-General) that Cambodia set a high goal, and we will do our best to meet it. To ensure ownership and independence, I tell him that Cambodia not only is ambitious, but working on foresight and proactiveness and prediction so that we can reach the goal […]

(6) Planning and implementing, managing by Cambodian officials from national to sub-national level

More than ninety years ago, I remember, almost all the ministries and institutions had relied on foreign experts from the IMF and/or the World Bank to write up the plan. Now all the plans are made by the Cambodian officials from the national level to the sub-national level. Anyone who says Cambodia depends on others – this or that country, they may come and see for themselves. Management, planning, leadership, and implementing plans in all areas, both private and public (are prepared by) the capacity of the Cambodians. Most of those skills come from training in the country for 40 years. Some of the Cambodians have been trained abroad through scholarships […] but most have been trained in the country […]

(7) To move on digital economy or industry 4.0, human resources, economic and basic structure needed

The foundation of human resources in general is no different to those of individuals […] to evolve to digital economy or industry 4.0, we need to have human resources and economic infrastructure that can guarantee (the intended step) […] the first phase of the Pentagonal Strategy sets out policy for growth, job, equity, efficiency, and sustainability, whereas the five key priorities are people, roads, water, electricity, and technology. As you can see that people are still the first priority. This pentagonal strategy has five phases for a period over 25 years. In that, people are still the first priority […] think big, think far ahead, think about the future to keep up the pace with others. I encourage you to think about building an empowered human resource, not only for the present but for the future […]


(8) Four pillars of education to produce good citizens

In the first pentagon (of the pentagonal strategy, we) focus on building the health, safety and attitudes of the people, which is in line with the four pillars that I have mentioned about education – to acquire knowledge, to acquire knowhow, to be a good citizen and to Know how to live in a harmonious society. These pillars of education are not only implemented from primary to secondary level, but included in national policy for ministries and institutions to as national policy so that they will implement in human resource development […]

(9) Five angles of the pentagon for the development of digital society

The Pentagonal Strategy sets out the (pentagon on) development of this digital society, with the first angle building digital administration and digital citizenship as an important task. The second angle is the development of the digital economy, digital business, electronic commerce and digital innovation. The third angle is to build and develop digital infrastructure. The fourth angle builds trust in digital systems, and in angle 5 – develop financial techniques. We have set out all this as a policy in this term […]

Ministries and state institutions in this legislative term, and from the previous terms, must continue to work towards the establishment of a digital transformation unit to realize the goal of digital transformation throughout the government. As we talk about digital government, each ministry/institution must be capable of fulfilling the tasks […] the digitality is now a part of our lives. We cannot deny digital. We cannot forbid our country form developing the 4G or 5G internet […]

The government must play an important exemplary role […] and in addition to the digital government, there is this digital people […] millions of Cambodians are connected (on internet and) have the ability to understand and use of digital systems or build up what we call digital citizenship. What does the government aim to do? We need to continue to strengthen the capacity of officials in digital skills, build human capital, people with digital skills, continue to promote digital literacy among the general population, develop curricula that incorporate basic digital skills, as well as other digital skills training programs […]


(10) Encourage developing research resources and training Establishing research and development facilities is an important task. Sharing and interconnecting with overseas partners (is one good thing) […] however, let us not forget the importance of networking with local partners […] I have mentioned (previously about) the motivation in setting up this R&D center. Sometimes, the government does not have to set the whole thing by itself but have the universities, where there are human resources available to do two jobs at once. The universities are the one doing researches anyway. The state cooperates with the private sector to do this (R&D) rather than setting up its own R&D institution […] this would be a shot of an arrow that kills two animals. We build research resources not only for the purpose of improving production, but also for distribution of knowledges to people […]./.


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