Hungarian leader set to pay formal visit to Cambodia

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Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen shakes hands with Hungarian President Janos Ader. AKP

Hungarian President Janos Ader will pay a formal visit to Cambodia at the end of October by invitation of King Norodom Sihamoni, a post on Prime Minister Hun Sen’s Facebook account said on Tuesday.

Hun Sen left the Kingdom for state visits to the Czech Republic, Hungary and Bulgaria from October 13-17.

Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation spokesman Ket Sophann did not reply to The Post for further comment as of press time.

In a meeting with Ader on Tuesday, Hun Sen told the Hungarian president that he will get to witness the real situation in the Kingdom and also visit the historic Unesco world heritage site, Angkor Wat.

The Prime Minister urged Ader to continue supporting Cambodia in regards to the ‘Everything But Arms’ (EBA) agreement. He also called on the EU to decide fairly on the matter.

Hun Sen said there are 38 Cambodian recipients of Hungarian scholarship, some of whom are still studying with the others having graduated.

Citing Ader, Hun Sen’s Facebook account said Hungary is a friend of Cambodia and supports the Kingdom on the EBA issue. Ader was also quoted as saying he welcomed Cambodians to study in the country.

The Royal Academy of Cambodia’s International Relations Institute director-general Kin Phea told The Post on Wednesday that given the prime minister’s warm welcome in the countries he is visiting, Cambodia is well respected on the international stage.

Besides, he said a foreign state leader will also visit the Kingdom and this is significant. “The state visit of an EU member to Cambodia is crucial while the Kingdom is having a trade issue with the bloc.

“While the dissolved Cambodian National Rescue Party (CNRP) accuses Cambodia of not having good relations with foreign countries, external and internal political initiatives have proven him wrong and are helpful to Cambodia,” Phea said.

Phea said formal economic cooperation is established in a diplomatic state-level visit. Usually, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) or bilateral agreement on trade and investments are signed.

Such state visits also have a good impact on the Kingdom in the regional or international media where positive reporting can lift Cambodia’s image and boost the country’s tourism sector and other related industries, he said.