Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Protecting children from Covid: a key focus of the Australia-Cambodia partnership

Protecting children from Covid: a key focus of the Australia-Cambodia partnership

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Australian ambassador Pablo Kang (second left) visits Ratanakkiri province for a Covid-19 vaccine rollout, in April. SUPPLIED

Protecting children from Covid: a key focus of the Australia-Cambodia partnership

This year we reflect on and celebrate 70 years of partnership and friendship between Australia and Cambodia.We also look optimistically to the future.

Australia prides itself on being a trusted, long-term and forward-looking partner that listens to and responds to Cambodian needs.

This includes in Cambodia’s health sector, where we have worked for decades.

This week, Phnom Penh International Airport will host the arrival of the first batch of Australia’s donation of 482,400 paediatric Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine doses for children aged 5-11.

Children play such an important role in the future, so it’s critical they are safe to learn, play and grow.

With this latest donation, Australia is proud to contribute to the protection of children in the 5-11 age group, which is particularly important for their ongoing education in a classroom environment.

This donation builds on Australia’s significant end-to-end Covid-19 support over the past year. Last December, we donated 2.35 million doses of the Pfizer BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, in addition to our AUD215 million global contribution to the COVAX Advance Market Commitment mechanism, which has so far delivered nearly six million vaccines to Cambodia.

Earlier this year, Australia also donated 133 ultra-low and low temperature vaccine freezers, and other essential cold chain equipment.

We have also complemented our vaccines and cold chain assistance with broader support for the national vaccine rollout. We’ve helped train Cambodian health workers, develop risk communication and e-registration tools, and helped the Cambodian government communicate the benefits of Covid-19 vaccination.

Australia’s global partnership with UNICEF makes this possible. This means safe and effective vaccines are reaching those who need them most.

All of this builds on decades of Australian development assistance to Cambodia’s health sector and our collective goal to strengthen Cambodia’s healthcare system overall.

Cambodia should be proud of its long and tireless Covid-19 vaccination campaign which is now positioning its people to focus on economic recoverywhile maintaining high vaccination and booster rates.

I was pleased to witness the campaign myself in Ratanakkiri province earlier this year and see how Cambodia, with Australia’s help, is providing vaccines to remote villagers, to the elderly, to pregnant women and to people with disabilities to ensure everyone has access to a safer future.

Focusing on children’s boosters against Covid-19 is the next logical step in the campaign.

Especially with Cambodia’s relatively young population, children represent the future – so keeping them healthy and at school is very much in the national interest. This is an objective which Australia is proud to support.

Pablo Kang is Australian ambassador to Cambodia


  • Angkor lifetime pass, special Siem Reap travel offers planned

    The Ministry of Tourism plans to introduce a convenient, single lifetime pass for foreign travellers to visit Angkor Archaeological Park and potentially other areas. The move is designed to stimulate tourism to the culturally rich province of Siem Reap as the start of the “Visit

  • Bosba: The first Khmer woman composer from UK’s Cambridge

    Bosba Panh is just 25 years old, but she’s already accomplished some impressive milestones for herself and the Kingdom. On July 24, she graduated with a Master’s degree from the University of Cambridge as the first Khmer woman composer and Khmer music graduate ever at

  • ‘Golden’ Angkor Wat likely due to natural phenomenon: ANA

    Pictures and video clips of the Angkor Wat temple, its spires seemingly coated in gold, have been shared tens of thousands of times on social media, prompting a sense of wonder among those who have seen them. Hong Sam Ath, who took the pictures and

  • Pailin longan winery tries to break through to the big time

    Longan aren’t quite as glamorous as some fruits. They don’t have the star-power of mangos or generate the excitement of a pricey seasonal niche fruit like the pungent durian. Unlike bananas or oranges, which are known and loved everywhere, longan remains a decidedly

  • Debt restructuring over, time to tackle rising NPL ratio

    The Cambodian banking system has just completed a 26-month debt restructuring exercise where scores of loan accounts were revised, classified and provisioned as the rate of non-performing loans inched up, sparking a slight credit risk unease Implemented in April 2020, the Covid-19 debt restructuring measures came

  • Koh Slaket studio resort brings culture with style

    Davitra (Cambodia) Co Ltd’s multi-million-dollar 13ha Koh Slaket studio-cum-resort just east of the capital was inaugurated in the first phase on August 6, providing national and international tourists with a new travel option and job opportunities for locals. The man-made cultural and scenic lakefront getaway