Prime Minister Hun Manet has instructed the Cambodia Development Resource Institute (CDRI) to conduct research and gather input for the government’s national development strategy plan to address various challenges. 

He explained that goal of the research was to assist the Kingdom in attaining upper-middle-income status by 2030 and high-income status by 2050.

The request came as he addressed the 2023 Cambodia Outlook Conference on November 23. The theme of this year’s conference was “Cambodia Vision 2030 and Beyond: Charting a Path for Resilient, Sustainable, and Inclusive Prosperity”, hosted by the CDRI.

He said that he wanted the results of the CDRI research to provide not only findings, but also key inputs into strategic planning and problem-solving policies. This input would enable the government to solve any ongoing problems and allow Cambodia to strengthen and expand its economic base and diversify its economy, for the sake of socio-economic resilience to achieve the vision. 

“I hope that today’s conference will be smooth and fruitful. I encourage all of you to actively engage in discussions at today’s conference so we can produce valuable input for the analysis and conclusions,” he added.

He continued that even though the world had experienced major crises, the government had ambitions to attain upper-middle-income status by 2030. Cambodia remains committed to making reforms and diversifying the economy in a global context. 

Yang Peou, secretary-general of the Royal Academy of Cambodia (RAC), said that in general, when a government places value on scientific research for the introduction of policies and strategies, it will formulate correct policies and reduce any shortcomings. Research is the backbone that leads to development, and without it, development would be slow and disorderly. 

He added that for example, RAC often conducts research and seeks input from government officials. 

“The CDRI has been a government partner for a long time, ever since the RAC was established. The CDRI has played a key research role for the government for a long time, and become a regular government partner,” he continued. 

Pa Chanroeun, president of the Cambodian Institute for Democracy (CID), believed that it was necessary for the government to collect input from actors from civil society organisations, public research institutions and the private sector in order to ensure the development of effective strategies. Research also helps to monitor the implementation of government’s policies and assess their effectiveness.

“These tasks require the participation of a research institute and think tank, whether the CDRI or other state and private institutions, or independent institutions. In this way, the input into policies and strategies is collected in a scientific and comprehensive way,” he added.