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RCEP, bilateral FTAs boost Cambodia's economic growth: PM

   Xinhua   08:15, June 20, 2024

PHNOM PENH, June 19 (Xinhua) -- The Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) and bilateral free trade agreements (FTAs) have helped boost Cambodia's economic growth and diversify exports, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Manet said on Wednesday.

Cambodia is a member of the RCEP agreement that engaged with 15 Asia-Pacific countries, and the Southeast Asian country also has bilateral FTAs with China, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates.

"As an active member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) and RCEP, Cambodia has a high possibility of access to huge markets," he said at a Cambodia-Singapore Business Forum held in Singapore and his speech was broadcast live on the state-run TVK.

The bilateral FTAs with China, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates have also further strengthened Cambodia's economic growth and diversified its exports, Hun Manet said, adding that the kingdom's economy is projected to achieve a growth rate of 6 percent in 2024, up from 5 percent in 2023.

On the export side, Cambodia shipped products worth 10.18 billion U.S. dollars to the international markets during the first five months of 2024, up 10.8 percent from 9.18 billion dollars over the same period last year, according to a report from the Ministry of Commerce.

The export to the fellow RCEP countries was valued at 3.97 billion dollars, or 39 percent of the kingdom's total export. During the January-May period this year, the figure was up 12.4 percent from 3.53 billion dollars over the same period last year, the report added.

RCEP comprises 15 countries including the 10 ASEAN member states of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam, and their five trading partners, namely China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and New Zealand.