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Cambodia seeks to promote trade relations with Britain

PHNOM PENH, Oct. 13 (Xinhua) -- Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday urged the United Kingdom to increase purchase orders for Cambodian products so as to further promote trade relations between the two countries.

He made the remarks during a meeting with visiting British Prime Minister's Trade Envoy Lord Puttnam at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia.

"The prime minister asked Puttnam to encourage more British companies to purchase Cambodian products, such as apparel, footwear and milled rice, in order to increase trade volume between the two countries," Eang Sophalleth, personal spokesman for Hun Sen, told reporters after the meeting.

The prime minister also suggested Puttnam to help attract more British investors to Cambodia in order to broaden trade and investment ties.

He said Cambodia gave priorities to the investment in human resources, telecommunication and transportation infrastructures, as well as electricity.

For his part, Puttnam promised to further promote trade and investment ties between the two counties for mutual interests.

He also admired Cambodia for its rapidly socio-economic development in recent years.

Trade volume between the two countries surpassed 1 billion U.S. dollars last year, according to the data released by the British embassy to Cambodia. Cambodia's exports to the UK are garment and footwear products, and milled rice, while the UK's products to Cambodia include cars and machinery.

On the investment side, UK is the fourth largest investor in Cambodia. According to the report of the Council for the Development of Cambodia, Cambodia had received investment of 2.4 billion U.S. dollars from UK in the last two decades.

British companies are doing businesses here in garment and footwear industry, banking and finance, engineering and architecture, education, hospitality and property services.

Puttnam made a two-day visit to Cambodia on Monday, where he would also meet with commerce minister Sun Chanthol, education minister Hang Chuon Naron, and health minister Mam Bunheng to explore ways to boost trade and investment ties.

Lord Puttnam, an Oscar-winning film producer, has been Trade Envoy to Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos and Myanmar since November 2012. It was his second visit to Cambodia after the first one in March this year.

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