Phnom Penh (FN), Oct. 28 – Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen said that ASEAN-India cooperation will continue to play crucial role in restoring economic, trade and investment activities, speaking at the 18th ASEAN-India summit, held on Thursday via videoconference.

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi and other ASEAN leaders also attended the meeting, except Myanmar.

“Despite the growing trends of protectionism and anti-globalization, Cambodia still strongly believes in multilateral mechanisms, especially in the context of addressing the COVID19 crisis, as well as revitalizing and boosting economic growth,” the premier said.

“In this sense, Cambodia would like to emphasize the importance of building regional trust through practical cooperation in line with the goals and principles of the ASEAN Outlook on the Indo-Pacific (AOIP) and the Indo-Pacific Oceans Initiative. Cambodia would also like to support the adoption of the ASEAN-India Joint Statement on Cooperation on the AOIP.”

“I would like to commend and express my appreciation for the efforts of the Government of India to contribute to the fight against COVID19. At the same time, I would like to join with all leaders of ASEAN member states in expressing our gratitude to the Government of India for continuously supporting the efforts to realize ASEAN integration through the Initiative for ASEAN Integration (IAI). I would also like to encourage India to continue to support the implementation of the IAI Work Plan IV 2021-2025, especially by promoting the development of physical connectivity and digitalization in education”, the premier underlined.

Samdech concluded that he hoped ASEAN-India relations will become even stronger and, as the incoming ASEAN Chair in the year 2022, Cambodia is ready to cooperate in organizing and celebrating this wonderful occasion.