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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs         9  July 2011

Bank prioritizes Cambodian development

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The Asian Development Bank (ADB) emphasized five priority sectors in its three-year, US$500 million Country Partnership Strategy on Friday.

The bank will focus specifically on lending to agriculture, education, finance, water supply and transport in Cambodia over the next three years, officials said yesterday.

"In order to reach our objectives we have identified five priority sectors … in order to promote inclusive income growth and social development," ADB Senior Country Economist Peter Brimble.

The bank intends to allocate $377 million on 12 projects in its priority sectors, with an additional $111 million to other projects, in 2011 through 2013, ADB figures show.

Improving Cambodia's transport linkages with other countries in the Greater Mekong Subregion was a main focus of the bank.

"We will improve cross-border transport and trade facilitation along the Southern Economic Corridor linking Bangkok to Ho Chi Minh City through Phnom Penh to promote market connectivity, trade and tourism activities within the GMS," said Peter Brimble.

Underpinning its activities was a focus on improved public sector management, such as public financial management, decentralisation and deconcentration, and public sector capacity development, it said in a statement.

The strategy received government endorsement in April and May, and final endorsement earlier this month.


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This year in Thailand-what next?

AseanAffairs   04 January 2011
By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

The first issue that can’t be answered is the health of Thailand’s beloved King Bhumibol, who is now 83 years old. He is the world's longest reigning monarch, but elaborate birthday celebrations in December failed to mask concern over his health. More


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