The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation will host the third round of consultative meetings on May 3 between the government and foreign non-governmental organisations (FNGOs) to strengthen cooperation between the state and the non-profit sector.

The ministry said in an April 29 press release that foreign minister Prak Sokhonn will preside over the opening session of the meeting on “strengthening the implementation of the law on accounting and auditing”, to be held at the ministry headquarters in Phnom Penh.

“Attended by representatives of relevant ministries, stakeholders and FNGOs, this forum aims to further raise the FNGOs’ awareness and enhance their implementation of the law on accounting and auditing, as well as all other pertinent obligations,” it said.

The ministry said that among the obligations the law has for FNGOs are accounting reporting, preparation of financial statements in accordance with Cambodia’s accounting standards and independent auditing of those statements, all of which contribute to the non-profit organisations’ accountability, transparency and efficiency.

Sokhonn previously stated at the first consultative meeting in 2019 that the forum will provide an opportunity for attendees to jointly identify challenges and find appropriate solutions to strengthening the enforcement of the law more effectively and in a manner that respects the rule of law.

He thanked all of the FNGOs participating in the meeting for their sincere hearts and goodwill in supporting the process of nation-building and development in Cambodia unconditionally from the difficult times of past eras until today, with the country having achieved “comprehensive peace” as a democracy and having made general progress in all spectrums of society.

“The achievements of the government so far have been made possible due to the indispensable contributions from all stakeholders, including the private sector, development partners and civil society organisations (CSOs).

“CSOs, both domestic and foreign, have played an important role in contributing to the provision of services and support to key sectors related to the socio-economic situation, especially in rural areas and remote communities in Cambodia,” Sokhonn said.

He added that the government is committed to continuing to work closely and openly with all of the organisations and is looking forward to welcoming cooperation with all FNGOs that operate in good faith based on the ideal of considering the interests of the people as a whole.

The Law on Associations and Non-Governmental Organisations (LANGO), officially promulgated in 2015, was designed to protect the right to freedom of association and to provide a clear legal framework for the operation of NGOs in Cambodia while safeguarding the legitimate rights and interests of citizens and the public interest.

The law is also aimed at promoting cooperation in partnership between associations and NGOs with public authorities to develop Cambodian society and make progress in all areas.