Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - North Korea talks trade pact with Cambodia

North Korea talks trade pact with Cambodia

North Korea talks trade pact with Cambodia

120704_07

A world map, with the Korean peninsula marked in red, at a hotel in Rason city, northeast of Pyongyang, North Korea. Photograph: Reuters

North Korea yesterday proposed to lower tax and trade barriers with Cambodia. The proposal, if made into a formal agreement, would join a long list of agreements between the two countries that have never been followed through.

The proposal, made by the country’s ambassador to Cambodia, Hong Ki Chol, during a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Keat Chhon and attended by the Post, would make Cambodian and North Korean businesses exempt from paying “double tax”, or tax in both countries.

Hong Ki Chol said such an agreement could help boost business between the two countries, which, have had diplomatic relations since 1964.

“To promote trade and investment between the two countries, we should sign the agreement on not imposing double tax,” he said during the meeting.

Although Cambodia has yet to sign a similar trade pact with any other county, the significance of the deal with North Korea was not disclosed.

The two countries have signed seven cooperation agreements since in 1993, none of which have been implemented, Ouch Borith, secretary of state at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said last year.

North Korea invested US$17 million in a cultural museum in Siem Reap last year. Other data on economic exchanges between the countries were not available.

North Korea has also discussed providing mining assistance in exchange for agricultural products such as rice and corn.

Keat Chhon, who is also the minister of economy and finance, was receptive to the proposal.

“We have never made this kind of agreement with any countries. So Cambodia will try even harder to achieve this kind of agreement in the year to come,” he said.

Cambodian Foreign Minister Hor Namhong made a high-level visit to North Korea last month.

Both Koreas have been invited to the ASEAN Regional Forum this month in Siem Reap, and Cambodian officials have mentioned the possibility of playing a role in reconciliation between the two belligerents.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Kunmakara at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman