Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - European Union to spend $80m

European Union to spend $80m

European Union to spend $80m

THE European Union (EU) has unveiled an $80 million aid package to Cambodia,

signing a two-year contract with the government.

The EU has also opened a

Phnom Penh office and appointed an Ambassador/Head of Delegation to Cambodia,

Gwyn Morgan.

Morgan said at the Jan 19 opening of the office that the EU

had to take a bigger role in South-East Asia than it had before.

Under a

"framework agreement" signed with the Cambodian government, the EU would

concentrate its aid program on rural development, road building, education,

agriculture and the promotion of human rights.

The EU would hire 1000

Cambodians to work on projects in six provinces initially, and later in many

more provinces. "We are here for a long partnership with Cambodia," Morgan said.

"We are here for as long as we can be helpful."

Cambodia's Minister of

Foreign Affairs, Ung Huot, welcomed the EU project as an important factor in the

rehabilitation of Cambodia.

Ly Thuch, advisor to First Prime Minister

Ranariddh, said the opening of an EU office meant there was "a great

recognition" from Europe for Cambodia.

The European Union, headquartered

in Brussels, comprises 15 European countries.

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