Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Russia joins post-Covid-19 tourism strategy: ministry

Russia joins post-Covid-19 tourism strategy: ministry

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
The ongoing health crisis has driven a sharp decline in the number of Russian tourists visiting Cambodia, at just 43 in the first five months of this year, down 99.80 per cent year-on-year from 21,834, ministry figures indicate. Yousos Apdoulrashim

Russia joins post-Covid-19 tourism strategy: ministry

Cambodia expects to see an increase in the number of Russian holidaymakers, especially as it pushes to reopen the tourism sector to international visitors who are fully-vaccinated against the novel coronavirus, once the situation allows.

The note of optimism came after an online meeting between Ministry of Tourism director-general for Tourism Development and International Cooperation Thong Rathsak and Demyan Smilevets, head of the Russian Federal Agency for Tourism’s Department for International Cooperation at the weekend.

The ongoing health crisis has driven a sharp decline in the number of Russian tourists visiting Cambodia, at just 43 in the first five months of this year, down 99.80 per cent year-on-year from 21,834, ministry figures indicate.

Ministry director for International and ASEAN Cooperation Try Chhiv said Smilevets accepted the Cambodian side’s request to expand tourism cooperation between the two countries, especially in the Kingdom’s initial tourism reopening phases.

During the meeting, the two sides also discussed issues such as training Russian-speaking tour guides, an online road show with the direct participation of Russian tour operators, and study tours, with emphasis on those to be organised by travel or media companies.

They also touched on Russian support for the implementation of a tourism restoration and revival roadmap, direct flights between Cambodia and Russia, and setting up an ASEAN-Russia tourism centre.

The ministry noted that the number of Russian tourists visiting Cambodia had increased significantly before Covid, especially along the coast.

Cambodia and Russia are currently studying the possibility of establishing a bilateral free trade agreement (FTA) to promote and strengthen trade and investment cooperation on a larger scale.

On December 1, Ministry of Commerce secretary of state Sok Sopheak led a ministerial delegation to meet Russian ambassador to Cambodia Anatoly Borovik via video link.

Sopheak requested the Russian side to invite Cambodian businessmen and investors to events organised by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Russian Federation down the line and introduce them to a new world of trade and investment opportunities.

“In this context, Cambodia needs more investment from the Russian Federation, especially in the field of light and medium machinery to strengthen the Cambodian industry’s competitive edge and increase exports,” he said.

In this spirit, he said, Cambodia expresses its intent to conduct a feasibility study on a bilateral FTA with Russia as soon as possible.

Bilateral trade between the two countries was to the tune of $45.15 million in the first 10 months of 2020, representing an increase of 4.5 per cent year-on-year, commerce ministry statistics show.

Of that amount, Cambodia exported some $38.75 million worth of products, down 4.8 per cent year-on-year, and imported $6.4 million, gaining a gargantuan 155.68 per cent year-on-year, the data show.

And in 2019, total trade between the two countries reached more than $55.39 million, sinking 40.44 per cent from the $93.00 million logged in 2018, according to the ministry.


  • Omicron patients can stay home: PM

    The Ministry of Health has issued a directive on the treatment of people who have tested positive for the highly transmissible Omicron coronavirus variant, following a suggestion from Prime Minister Hun Sen on the night of January 21. The directive permits home quarantine for those who

  • Cambodia’s first ever anime festival kicks off Jan 22 at capital’s F3 centre

    Phnom Penh's first ever Anime Festival will bring together fans, artists, shops and other local businesses with ties to the Japanese animation style for cosplay competitions, online games, pop-up shops and more on January 22, with Friends Futures Factory (F3) hosting. F3 is a project that

  • Mr Pancake or M Crepe? Tasty by any title

    Crowds of people gather around a lone man with a mobile food cart every day at around 2pm in front of the Institut Francais du Cambodge to order what many say are the best crepes in Phnom Penh. To some – even to the man making

  • Fourth dose Covid booster drive jabs 43K in two days

    In the first two days of the fourth-dose Covid-19 vaccination campaign, more than 43,000 people volunteered to get the jabs, while over 4.6 million people have received a third shot. Health ministry spokeswoman Or Vandine said that fourth-dose vaccinations, which began on January 14 exclusively with the Pfizer

  • Singapore backs Cambodia's efforts on Myanmar

    Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong supports Cambodia in its efforts to seek a solution to the ongoing Myanmar crisis as the chair of ASEAN. Lee expressed his support during a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen via videoconference on January 14, with the talks focused

  • Phnom Penh condo market loses steam

    Just four new condominiums were launched for sale last year in the capital, down from 17 in 2020, according to research by CBRE Cambodia. The four developments comprised “more than 1,000” units, while the 17 in 2020 consisted of 10,866, the real estate firm reported. CBRE Cambodia categorises condos as “high-range”, “