May 8, 2011

Philippines eyeing investments in Cambodia, Laos


MANILA, Philippines - Cambodia is willing to sell rice at a lower price in exchange for investments from the Philippines.

Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Office Secretary Ramon “Ricky” Carandang told Malacanang reporters late Saturday in Jakarta, Indonesia that Cambodia is tapping the country for investments in their agriculture and tourism sectors.

President Benigno “Noynoy” Aquino III and Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen held a bilateral meeting there on the sidelines of the 18th Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) summit.

“Cambodia said some of the rice we are buying from Vietnam also comes from them. Their problem is they do not have enough storage facilities and we do not have direct flights between our countries,” he said.

“We will be studying their proposal. This will certainly result in lower rice prices because we remove the middleman, so to speak,” Carandang added.

Hun Sen also wants direct flights to and from Cambodia and Manila.

Laos also engaged Aquino in a bilateral talk, as it also asked the Philippines to pour in investments there.

Carandang said Lao Prime Minister Thongsing Thammavong has invited Aquino for a state visit.

Aquino’s next foreign trips will be to Thailand and Brunei by the end of the month.

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