11 July 2024

Phnom Penh – India’s comprehensive strategic partnership (CSP) with ASEAN is expected grow and strengthen bilateral ties, according to a senior Cambodian official.

Dr. Kao Kim Hourn, Minister Delegate attached to the Prime Minister’s Office, said yesterday (Friday) that India is an important strategic partner with ASEAN, which can play an important role in keeping the peace, bringing prosperity, saving the planet, protecting people and strengthening partnerships in the region.

What is more important, he said, is the potential of ASEAN-India cooperation in the decades to come in a wide range of areas.

Kim Hourn, who will assume the role of ASEAN Secretary General in January 2023, told a seminar, co-organised by the Cambodian Institute of Cooperation and Peace and the Research and Information Service of India, that ASEAN foreign ministers will recommend, to ASEAN leaders at their upcoming Summit, the granting of CPS status to India.

The US will be another recipient of CSP status. Both China and Australia were accorded the status last year. ASEAN has a five-tier dialogue structure, namely CSP, strategic partnership, dialogue partner, sectoral dialogue partner and development partner.

The seminar was the curtain raiser to the 19th ASEAN-India Summit, which starts on 12th November. Indian Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar will represent Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who will stay in his electoral constituency of Gujarat, to oversee the local election.

The sub-continent joined ASEAN as a sectoral dialogue partner in 1992, so ASEAN-India ties mark their 30th anniversary this year.

Kim Hourn said that Cambodia counts India as a force for public good.

This year has been designated ASEAN-India Friendship Year. India signed the Treaty of Amity and Cooperation in 2003.