German international development organisation Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) and the Ministry of Industry and Handicrafts met this week to explore ways of facilitating import and export activities for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as part as the Integration Support Project Asean plus Cambodia (Arise plus Cambodia).
Chhea Layhy, director of the ministry’s General Department of Small and Medium Enterprises and Handicraft, told The Post on Thursday that the project aims to support efforts by the Ministry of Industry and Handicrafts to boost the SME sector.
“The ministry will work with the General Department of Customs and Excise to create a mechanism to make it easier for SMEs to import and export raw materials,” he said.
Layhy said the Arise plus Cambodia project – funded by the EU and BMZ – is being implemented by GIZ. The project started last year and will run until 2023 with a budget of €9.35 million ($10.1 million).
To implement the project, GIZ is working with three ministries – Economy and Finance; Industry and Handicrafts; and Commerce.
“The project will directly benefit SMEs by strengthening their capacity and enhancing the quality of their products so that they can be exported abroad,” he said.
Arise plus Cambodia project director Christine Bower said in a meeting with the ministry on Tuesday that the project will achieve several goals – improve customs procedures, facilitate trade, standardise quality and strengthen regulatory enforcement.