The Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) and the Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) have scheduled a private sector forum between Cambodia and the United Arab Emirates for the first quarter of next year.

The forum will bring together investors and representatives for discussions about investment and trade affairs. 

Sun Chanthol, CDC first vice-president, met with Marwan Al Marri, Asia regional director of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce, on December 8 to discuss the plans. The meeting was also attended by representatives from the Cambodian Oknha Association (COA).

According to a CDC announcement, Al Marri highlighted that many members of the Dubai chambers have invested in the region, thus demonstrating the key role of the UAE body in attracting investment and boosting trade activity.

“The important discussions we are enjoying today are based on positive prospects for trade and investment between the two of our countries, in line with the Dubai Economic Agenda (D33) by 2033,” he added. 

Chanthol said that Cambodia warmly welcomed potential investment and trade from the Dubai chambers, or any other business representatives who showed interest in expanding their collaboration. 

“We play the role of a one window service office in coordinating investment affairs between Cambodian government institutions and the private sector. We also cooperate closely with the COA, who act as investors,” he added. 

COA spokesman Hun Lak, who attended the talks, said on December 10 that the meeting aimed to build close relationships with foreign investors.

“During the meeting, we discussed the possibility of signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to facilitate stronger communicate between the COA and the Dubai chambers. We were also promised further business meetings to discuss further investment between the two countries,” he added. 

He explained that this is very important because it was the mission of the COA to elevate excellence and the value of the honorific title of Oknha in Cambodia. Oknhas joined the government in promoting trade and investment, and drove national economic development.

“Our association has been recognised for its partnership with the government – and all relevant sides – in order to increase relations and cooperation with the private sector, both at home and abroad,” he said. 

“The upcoming private forum between Cambodia and the United Arab Emirates will give us a chance to expand our network of investments into overseas markets,” he added.

Cambodia and the United Arab Emirates signed a comprehensive economic partnership agreement (CEPA) in June.

The CEPA became the Kingdom’s third free trade agreement, after the Cambodia-China Free Trade Agreement (CCFTA) came into force on January 1, 2022 and the Cambodia-Korea Free Trade Agreement (CKFTA) became effective in December 1, 2022.