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Partnerships for Infrastructure (P4I) has been officially launched in Cambodia, with an event hosted by the Australian Ambassador, H.E. Pablo Kang, in Phnom Penh.
Around 150 people were in attendance from government, development partners, associations and networks, academia and the private sector, as well as UN agencies and international organisations.
During his opening remarks, Ambassador Kang said that the P4I initiative would build on Cambodia’s 70-year relationship with Australia and accelerate quality infrastructure development to drive resilient and inclusive growth in the country.
“Australia has a longstanding and trusted reputation for supporting quality infrastructure development in the region and in Cambodia,” said Ambassador Kang.
“Cambodia has expressed an interest in accessing Australian infrastructure expertise and experience to meet the country’s diverse infrastructure needs and to drive an inclusive, resilient economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. We look forward to seeing the benefits of this new infrastructure partnership in Cambodia.”
Following Ambassador Kang’s opening remarks, the keynote address was delivered by H.E. Pheng Sovicheano, Secretary of State at Ministry of Public Works and Transport (MPWT) and representative of H.E. Sun Chanthol, Senior Minister and Minister of MPWT.
Excellency Sovicheano expressed appreciation to Australia for its enduring friendship with the Kingdom of Cambodia and commitment to support the nation’s infrastructure priorities through P4I.
“As a country, we are faced with a growing population, increasing urbanisation, and climate change risks that must be addressed. In our ASEAN Chair year, we are also seeking to strengthen connectivity across borders to expand markets and enhance trade,” he said.
“To do this, we need substantial infrastructure investment and development. We welcome the assistance of Australia to build our country’s capacity to plan and deliver inclusive and resilient infrastructure projects for the benefit of all Cambodian people.”
P4I’s Executive Director Elena Rose provided an overview of P4I’s engagement in Cambodia, with videos shown introducing P4I and explaining wastewater cost recovery work with the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF).
H.E. Om Macthearith, Director General of the General Department of Public Private Partnership in MEF delivered Closing Remarks, highlighting his positive reflections of working with P4I in recent months.
The event concluded with a ribbon-cutting between the three speakers and a group photo on stage with dignitaries in attendance.