Australia Offers $51m to Aid Cambodia’s Covid-19 Recovery

As Cambodia and Australia celebrate 70 years of diplomatic relations, Australia has unveiled plans to pump $51 million into Cambodia’s Covid-19 recovery and help the economy grow so the Kingdom can hit its target of middle-income status by 2030.
Officials at launch of Cambodia Australia Partnership for Resilient Economic Development. Kiripost via Australian Embassy
Officials at launch of Cambodia Australia Partnership for Resilient Economic Development. Kiripost via Australian Embassy

Australia plans to provide $51 million to support Cambodia’s Covid-19 recovery and rehabilitate the economy to enable it to hit its target of reaching middle-income status by 2030.

On Thursday, Minister of Economy and Finance (MEF), Aun Pornmoniroth, and Australian ambassador Pablo Kang discussed Australia's General Development Assistance Policy in Cambodia, the Cambodia-Australia Partnership for Sustainable Economic Development, and the Cambodia Australia Partnership for Resilient Economic Development (CAP-RED), under the framework of grant funding.

CAP-RED is a five-year partnership built on more than a decade of Australia’s support to Cambodian agriculture and infrastructure through the now-completed Cambodia-Australia Agricultural Value Chain (CAVAC) and Investing in Infrastructure programs. Together, these programs have benefitted more than two million rural Cambodians. CAP-RED officially launched in September.

CAP-RED will support the Cambodian government and key stakeholders to develop policies that drive inclusive, resilient and sustainable economic growth.

Pornmoniroth said the launch of CAP-RED is not only in line with the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Australia and Cambodia, but coincides with Cambodia holding ASEAN chairmanship and at a time the nation prepares to host the ASEAN Summit, from November 10 to 13.

Pablo Kang said the Australian government will continue to deepen cooperation between the two countries, and plans to provide development assistance to Cambodia of $51 million for 2022 to 2023. This is to support Cambodia’s response to the Covid-19 crisis and to revive the economy in a transitional and environmentally-friendly manner to become a middle-income country.

Australia will provide technical advice and assistance for measures and policies that will support economic recovery, including economic modeling of Covid-19 impacts on growth, employment and poverty, and policy response assessments. Australia will support construction safety standards, and assist Cambodia to develop and implement building codes that save lives and improve disability access.

In addition, the project will scale-up efforts to boost agricultural production, diversify crops and increase value addition. Australia will champion alternative financial services tailored for women in rural areas and will also support rural development through ongoing investments in land-mine clearance, according to the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.