Prime Minister Hun Sen has highlighted the importance of the One Village, One Product (OVOP) Movement in raising awareness of locally made products, as he encouraged Cambodians to use and promote such goods so as to contribute to the enrichment of Cambodian society.
He made this declaration ahead of the 5th National Day for the Promotion of the Use of Khmer Products on April 9, celebrated under the theme, “Supporting Khmer Products to Maintain the National Economy”.
For the occasion, Hun Sen, who is also Honorary President of the OVOP Movement’s National Committee, issued a message instructing ministries and institutions to work together and enhance the use of Cambodian products both locally and abroad.
The prime minister emphasised the need to disseminate a range of Khmer products to Cambodians across the country to raise awareness of the products, saying that local OVOP representatives should cooperate with the private sector and the Ministry of Commerce to coordinate online marketing in order to help buy, sell and exhibit Khmer products both in the country and abroad, particularly in Cambodian representative offices.
He urged the entities to cooperate with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation to coordinate the promotion of local goods at events organised by the representative office.
“The Committee for Promoting the OVOP movement must continue to cooperate with … relevant ministries and institutions to promote local products. It should also monitor and evaluate the progress of production and sale of these products, as well as mobilise investment in the products in accordance with the National Policy on OVOP Movement 2016-2026,” he said.
The commerce ministry has recently launched CambodiaTrade, an e-marketplace that seeks to promote local products for sale in both domestic and international markets.
Hun Sen added that there was a need to improve the skills of producers during the production process. In particular, he noted a need to bring increased focus to product quality improvement and safety, as well as processing and packaging to appeal to domestic and foreign markets.
Mao Eang, owner of the OVOP Market in Prey Veng province’s Kanh Chriech district, told The Post that promoting the movement is a welcome move as it offers Cambodians an opportunity to use – and therefore promote – local products in their daily lives, thereby contributing to the national economic growth.
“As more and more local products are used, it will contribute to creating jobs for people and boost economic growth and be beneficial to families and society. With support and promotion from the government, enterprises and traders will be encouraged to pivot to producing or processing products locally to supply the market,” he said.
Commerce ministry spokesperson Penn Sovicheat said that, in conjunction with the OVOP movement, the ministry has been promoting the “Buy Cambodian Campaign” movement annually, though both campaigns have been interrupted for the last two years as a result of Covid-19.
He said the ministry has also recently organised a movement to sell goods in various provincial markets, to promote the sale and production of products in villages, and noted the ministry’s support as having helped produce Khmer sculptures in Kandal province, Kampong Chhnang province-style pottery, as well as marble sculptures in Pursat province.
“We hope that this movement will contribute to improving the livelihoods of people who specialise in the production of geographical indication [GI] goods and reducing poverty in individual regions.
“We are confident the movement will raise the profile of Cambodia on the international stage, attracting tourists to buy such products to take back [to their countries],” Sovicheat said.