Four ministers are scheduled to visit Germany between September 24 and 30 on a study tour of its decentralization programme.
Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport spokesman Ros Soveacha said the visit would improve the Kingdom’s ongoing decentralisation and deconcentration reforms.
“The trip will provide Cambodia and Germany with the opportunity to strengthen bilateral cooperation and learn about decentralisation in Germany across relevant sectors,” said Soveacha.
Benjamin Knoedler, the spokesman for the German Embassy in Phnom Penh, said Germany has supported the Cambodian government in its decentralised service delivery framework for more than a decade.
Therefore, he said, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development invited the delegation to a study tour on decentralisation in the second half of September.
“Upon the request of the Royal Government [of Cambodia], the study tour will address local service delivery in public health, education, solid waste management and forestry. All these policy areas are highly relevant in the context of Cambodia,” said Knoedler.
He said Germany was known for its decentralised governance. While the Cambodian and German context was different, the study tour aims to encourage the ongoing decentralisation in the Kingdom.
Knoedler said the delegation would meet with local government officials and officials of the Foreign Office, the federal ministries of the Interior, Building and Community, and Economic Cooperation and Development, as well as members of parliament.
“The delegation will be led by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, Sar Kheng,” he said, adding that the detailed programme of the study tour was currently under development.
“This visit to the most influential country in the EU could help bring about a compromise between the EU and Cambodia over Everything But Arms,” said political analyst Lao Mong Hay.