Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday urged Pakistan to boost trade and investment between the two countries.

The appeal was made during a meeting with Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly of Pakistan Qasim Khan Suri at the Peace Palace in Prampi Makara district’s Mittapheap commune in Phnom Penh.

Hun Sen said Cambodia established diplomatic relations with Pakistan – then the Dominion of Pakistan – in 1952. However, trade between the two nations remains low compared to many other countries.

“The trade volume between the two countries is still very low. [We] want to see both countries find a way to promote and enhance cooperation – especially in terms of the economy and investment,” he said.

Suri noted that the two countries have had long-standing relations and that Cambodia has been enjoying very strong growth over the years. He said he wants to see increased economic cooperation between Pakistan and Cambodia, as well as other with other Asean countries.

Ministry of Commerce spokesman Seang Thay told The Post that while Cambodia-Pakistan trade is currently minimal, the two leaders’ commitment will create a new milestone to enhance economic cooperation.

“We don’t export much to Pakistan at the moment, as its distance poses a challenge for us. We do wish to see more trade between the two countries as we are a pro-business country. We welcome all businessmen and investors here,” he said.

Data from the Embassy of Pakistan shows that bilateral trade between the two countries reached $16 million in 2011 and ballooned to $103.4 million in 2012.