Women form an incalculable part of Cambodia’s economy, Prime Minister Hun Sen has declared, as he praised efforts of the Cambodian National Council for Women’s (CNCW) in contributing to the Kingdom’s development over the years.

Hun Sen made the remarks during a meeting at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh on February 21 to review the CNCW’s achievements in the past year as well as its plans for 2022.

The meeting was held to monitor and review the action plan and make recommendations for practices to further promote women’s participation in the government, women’s rights and status in society, and to discuss women’s priority issues.

Hun Sen said in a Facebook post later that day that he appreciated and placed high value on the efforts that the CNCW had made in advancing the role of women in industry.

Ministry of Interior secretary of state Chou Bun Eng – speaking on behalf of CNCW president and Minister of Women’s Affairs Ing Kantha Phavi – said that developing women leaders at the national and sub-national levels has been a high priority for leaders of ministries and institutions throughout the Kingdom.

More than 2,200 women had attended skills training workshops both within the country and abroad in 2020 and 2021, she said.

She added that at the administration’s sub-national level, the women’s affairs ministry had organised programmes to build the capacity of women officials in implementing their work and receiving support, alongside promoting gender equality, inclusiveness, social morality and leadership.

“We have also included these topics in the investment programme of the provinces, integrating them into the plan of the commune, town and district,” she said.

Bun Eng noted that Hun Sen had made pushing for and promoting gender equality in all sectors and levels a priority in society as well as when developing and implementing laws and policies on the national and sub-national levels.

“The prime minister always fully supports, both in spirit and financially, the actions of CNCW to achieve such monumental progress, under the umbrella of peace,” she said.

CNCW was established in 2001, with Queen Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk and Prime Minister Hun Sen serving as honorary president and vice-president respectively. Since 2006, it has held annual meetings presided over by the premier.

The council will observe this year’s Women Day on March 8 under the theme of “Post-covid economic recovery and living in the ‘new normal’ with resilience and through sustainable development”.