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China ties 'improve Cambodia livelihoods'

Xinhua | Updated: 2022-08-24 08:39

Chinese-funded enterprises have played an important role in improving local people's livelihood in Cambodia, according to the results of a new survey released last week. Entitled "China in Young Eyes", the survey was conducted last year by the Center for Cambodian Studies at Beijing Foreign Studies University and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road Research Center of the Royal University of Phnom Penh, with support from China Huaneng Group.

It interviewed a total of 342 Cambodian youths, who are mainly undergraduates and postgraduates from the Royal University of Phnom Penh, the Royal University of Law and Economics, as well as researchers from the Royal Academy of Cambodia and independent think tanks.

The top 10 keywords describing the China-Cambodia relations in the survey are Belt and Road Initiative, Special Economic Zone, Chinese-developed vaccines, Chinese companies, expressways, hydropower stations, investment, Chinese language, "ironclad friends" and job opportunities.

"The survey results show that Cambodian youths generally believe that China is a responsible, big country, pursuing peaceful development, and Chinese-funded enterprises have played an important role in improving local people's livelihoods," says a joint news release.

The BRI and the Special Economic Zone are the top two keywords for Cambodian youths to describe the current Cambodia-China relations.

"Some 69.29 percent of the young Cambodians interviewed positively commented on the role played by Chinese-funded enterprises in Cambodia's economic development, and more than 70 percent of the respondents expressed their willingness to work in Chinese-funded enterprises," the news release states.

It adds that the China-Cambodia Free Trade Agreement, which came into force in January, has provided new opportunities for deepening mutually beneficial cooperation between the two countries.

More than 60 percent of the respondents gave a positive response to Chinese investment, and wanted to see more Chinese companies investing in the Southeast Asian nation.

The survey also found that China has become one of the most desirable destinations for Cambodian youths to study abroad, and the economy, science and technology, politics, and Chinese language are the priority subjects for Cambodian youths to study in China.

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