The Royal Academy of Cambodia (RAC) held a round-table discussion in order to collect input from relevant institutions and civil society organisations to incorporate them into the Kingdom's human resource development efforts.
The August 4 discussion, held under the theme “Human resources are the backbone of societal development”, was attended by representatives from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training, Ministry of Planning, UNICEF Cambodia and the Union of Youth Federations of Cambodia (UYFC).
RAC secretary-general Yang Peou said the discussion was intended to give youths insight into making decisions and choosing paths or goals for the development of society as a whole, because they are the backbone and the pillars of the Kingdom's future society.
“Human resources are the most important factor for socio-economic development. Although a country is rich in natural resources, if its human resources were weak, then problems would ensue.
"In contrast, those countries that have strong human resources, whether their natural resources are abundant or not, they can still grow quickly. For example, Japan, Israel and Singapore, among others, have fewer natural resources but their human resources are very strong, so rapid development due to human resources can create a front-line economy,” he said.
Lay Sovichea, head of the policy research bureau of analysis at the education ministry, said that both now and in the future, every country in the world will try to improve its human resources to meet the needs of both their society and the rest of the world.
“So, we need to pay a lot of attention to the development of the country through research and acquire skills and innovation, which are at the core of human development,” he explained.
Yim Pich Malika, deputy head of the General Department of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) at the labour ministry, shared tips related to the production of human resources with technical skills, knowledge and a good work ethic.
She said the ministry had established TVET institutions and had come up with the slogan “every youth must learn one special skill".
“This is our mission to make sure that youths have the skills to contribute to the development of society,” she added.
Poch Sovandy, deputy director-general of planning at the planning ministry, said human resource development, which plays an important role in developing society and the economy, is the government’s priority policy, and the ministry has made efforts to formulate various policies to support it.
“We focus on developing the human resources of Cambodia, just as every other country is focused on doing this work. So for our goal of socio-economic development, we need all available human resources, which requires every stakeholder – leaders, civil servants, workers and students – to support each other,” he said.
Chea An San, a member of the UYFC central committee, said his definition of human resources focused on health, education and employment.
“These three factors are the main activities of our UYFC. We have worked to help supplement these resources with the ministries and the government through cooperation and strengthen the resources of youth as part of contributing to the building of society together,” he said.
Citing the UYFC’s research, he said literate people now account for over 88 per cent of the country’s estimated population of 16 million.
And according to data from nearly 40 institutions, he said Cambodia now has over 10,000 technical scientists divided into 14 skill areas, so their number had increased over time though it has yet to meet or responded entirely to the demands of the job market.