Thailand, Cambodia to forge 16 partnership deals

Thailand, Cambodia to forge 16 partnership deals

Somkid: Aiming to triple trade by 2020
Somkid: Aiming to triple trade by 2020

Thailand is set to sign 16 partnership deals with Cambodia during this week's trade delegation visit led by Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak.

Commerce Minister Apiradi Tantraporn said five of the deals will be signed by government-to-government units and the remaining 11 will be between private-sector bodies.

She said the Commerce Ministry's International Trade Promotion Department would sign three memorandums of understanding (MoUs) with the Cambodia Trade Promotion Department to foster trade and investment, jointly develop startups and small and medium-sized enterprises to be more innovative and strengthen border trade.

The two sides aim to triple two-way trade to US$15 billion (530 billion baht) by 2020.

The two governments will also set up a Thai-Cambodian border trade committee to push for the economic connectivity of border cities, promote the private sector to invest in and develop border transport and logistics services and boost trade and investment activities along the border.

The Gem and Jewellery Institute of Thailand will also sign an MoU with Cambodia's General Department of SMEs and Handicrafts to promote and support the development of the countries' gems and jewellery industries.

Mrs Apiradi said the MoUs in the private sector included one to be signed by the Thai Chamber of Commerce and the Cambodia Chamber of Commerce, one between Siam Global House and LYP Group on construction materials, retail and wholesale business, and one involving power transmission development in Poipet's special economic zone with Thailand-based B. Grimm.

Cambodia is Thailand's eighth-biggest trade partner in Asean and 21st-biggest partner worldwide.

In 2016, two-way trade between Cambodia and Thailand totalled $5.59 billion, with Thailand enjoying a trade surplus of $3.72 billion.

Key exports to Cambodia included finished oil, gems and jewellery, beverages, sugar, motorcycles and parts.

Imports included precious stones, jewellery, fruits and vegetables, garments, wires and cables, ore and metals.

Thailand is currently the ninth-biggest provider of foreign direct investment in Cambodia, with combined investment totalling $964.5 million.

Key investors include Charoen Pokphand Group, Thai Beverage Plc, Betagro Group, TK Garment, Crystal Investment, KCS, Cambodia Air Traffic Services and Bangkok Airways.

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