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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Tokyo FM is upbeat

Tokyo FM is upbeat

C AMBODIA is making good progress on the economic front while its political leadership is more confident after a year in office, former Japanese foreign minister Michio Watanabe said on Oct 16, at the end of a three-day official visit.

"I have been very, very happy to be here. I have the impression that Cambodia had made much progress in economic reconstruction," Watanabe told Reuters. in a weekend interview.

Watanabe said if Cambodia could demonstrate continuing political stability and renew its shattered infrastructure, he was confident Japanese investors would view the country favorably.

"The wages are not very high so if the infrastructure could be reconstructed in Cambodia, I think that there are possibilities that Japanese investors will come," he said. He added he was encouraged to see the leaders of the two main political parties had established a good working relationship.

"In July there was a coup d'état, but the government succeeded in resolving this coup attempt," Watanabe said.

He noted that Cambodia was not a resource-rich country and said he thought the Japanese government would possibly increase its aid allocation to Cambodia.

Japan is the single biggest aid donor to Cambodia.

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