Spain's Carmen Moreno has been approved as the new EU ambassador to Cambodia, replacing the outgoing George Edgar, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesperson Ket Sophann told The Post on Monday.
Moreno is scheduled to take office in early September.
“The government has approved the EU’s candidate for a new ambassador to Cambodia,” Sophann said.
The UK’s Edgar told The Post on Monday that he would leave Cambodia in late August and expected Moreno to arrive in early September.
“Carmen Moreno’s exact arrival date is yet to be fixed, but I expect her to arrive in early to mid-September.
“I will leave Cambodia at the end of August and will be happy closer to that date to comment on my period as EU ambassador and the priorities for the relationship between the EU and Cambodia,” Edgar said.
Moreno is currently a senior official at the Asia-Europe Meeting and the Special Representative for Afghanistan-Pakistan at the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
She was Spanish ambassador to Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Cambodia in 2012.
The arrival of the new ambassador comes as the EU continues with the procedure that could see Cambodia lose access to the 28-nation bloc’s Everything But Arms (EBA) agreement.
Government spokesman Phay Siphan told The Post on Monday that he believed Moreno would work, in the spirit of cooperation, to improve the good relationship enjoyed by the EU and Cambodia.
Social analyst Meas Nee said Moreno’s appointment would not affect the EU’s position regarding EBA or its current relationship with Cambodia.
“I think having a new ambassador will not affect the EU’s decision-making process regarding EBA.
“As we know, 28 countries make up the EU and the procedure when decisions are made is complicated and takes time. So the new ambassador will not be able to change what has happened so far,” Nee said.
However, he said the new ambassador would continue as the EU’s “eyes and ears” in monitoring the political situation in Cambodia.