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Cambodia focused on green issues: Hun Sen

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Prime Minister Hun Sen addressing the opening ceremony of the International Party Conference on “Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development”, held in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia, via video link on October 6. SPM

Cambodia focused on green issues: Hun Sen

Despite being a small country with low greenhouse gas emissions, Cambodia has tripled its national budget for climate change mitigation efforts and has set the goal of a 42 per cent reduction of emissions by 2030.

Prime Minister Hun Sen reiterated the Kingdom’s commitment while addressing the opening ceremony of the International Party Conference on “Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development”, held in Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Russia, via video link on October 6.

He said that to contribute to environmental protection, Cambodia had set out a long-term carbon-neutral development strategy to promote a climate-resilient green economy with low carbon emissions.

He added that Cambodia has also identified green development and mitigation of climate change as key components in creating a resilient economy post-pandemic and set investment laws that encourage investment in green energy, a circular economy and environmental protection.

“Environmental issues do not respect borders. Only international cooperation and solidarity can effectively address global environmental challenges and save our planet. I believe that we can do it,” he said.

“The many good examples of this solidarity, such as the implementation of the Montreal Protocol, which eliminated ozone depletion, give me strong hopes that we can overcome these issues together,” he added.

The premier said all stakeholders must continue to promote international cooperation – both bilaterally and multilaterally – by keeping differences in leadership, politics, culture and religion separate. Financial support and technology transfer from developed countries to developing nations is also necessary to effectively address global environmental issues.

“At the same time, we should focus on building and integrating human resources by sharing knowledge on environmental issues to immediately respond to global environmental emergencies,” he said.

Ministry of Environment spokesman Neth Pheaktra said Cambodia has implemented legal and economic measures to increase the efficiency of natural resource management and conservation.

The ministry has supported communities in protected areas with both technical knowledge and resources. This would allow them to strengthen cultivation and animal husbandry to support their families, and also serve the tourism sector, which improves local economies, he added.

“This is an important turning point. Cambodia has now received revenue from conservation and has even eliminated the idea of felling trees to earn money from the people’s mindset. We now generate income from the protection of our forests under the motto ‘Keep the trees standing for the benefit of the economy and society’,” he said.

Pheaktra explained that Cambodia had been successful in selling carbon credits – which raised national prestige on the international stage – in a way few countries in the world could do. This contradicts the false image of Cambodia as a country with a high amount of forest crime, he added.

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