Ambassador-designate An Sokkhoeurn on Tuesday presented a letter of credence to Switzerland’s Head of Protocol of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs Beatrice Schaer in the Swiss capital Bern to endorse his appointment as Cambodia’s ambassador to the country.
In a Facebook post of the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Cambodia to the UN Office at Geneva, Sokkhoeurn identified two key priorities – strengthening economic and cultural relations and boosting bilateral ties.
These would be done through the exchange of information and visits, he said.
“Schaer shared a similar view of strengthening our bilateral relations and welcomed taking on these priorities during the diplomatic tenure of Ambassador Sokkhoeurn. Furthermore, she assured him of her full support and cooperation for his mission in Switzerland.
“Cambodia cherishes its long-lasting friendship and productive cooperation with Switzerland. He [Sokkhoeurn] conveyed the Cambodian government’s appreciation to the Swiss government for its continued support for the socio-economic development of Cambodia through the Mekong Regional Cooperation Strategy for 2018-21,” the Facebook post said.
Sokkhoeurn also thanked the Swiss government for its annual allocation of $4 million to the Kantha Bopha Children’s Hospitals in Cambodia.
He apprised Schaer of the actions the Cambodian government had taken to ensure its donation significantly sustains the hospitals’ operations.
Schaer also briefed Sokkhoeurn on the procedures for the presentation of his letter of credence on January 14, in Bern, to Simonetta Sommaruga, who holds this year’s rotating Swiss presidency.
Switzerland and Cambodia’s diplomatic relations began in 1963. Both countries have engaged in regular political dialogue since 2016 and have cooperated with each other within the Asean framework.
Cambodia is one of several countries under the Mekong Region Cooperation Strategy for 2018-21, which is coordinated by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation.
The strategy covers three main areas – local governance and citizen participation, agriculture and food security, and employment and vocational education and training, said Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs’ website.