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Turkey pledges closer relations as Kingdom opens new embassy

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Foreign minister Prak Sokhonn meets Turkish vice-president Fuat Oktay during his visit on Sunday. MFAIC

Turkey pledges closer relations as Kingdom opens new embassy

Turkey has pledged to increase cooperation with Cambodia as the chair of ASEAN in 2022, and believes the opening of embassies in the two countries will further elevate bilateral relations.

The commitment followed a meeting between Turkish foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and his Cambodian counterpart Prak Sokhonn during the latter’s two-day visit to Turkey on February 26-27.

Cavusoglu noted that he met virtually with Sokhonn as he was in quarantine.

“We will increase cooperation with Cambodia as the ASEAN chair. We signed an agreement on avoidance of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes on income. We also signed a memorandum of understanding [MoU] on cooperation in the field of protocol,” he said.

The visit also saw the official inauguration ceremony of the Cambodian embassy in Turkey.

In a press release, the Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation said the two ministers were convinced that the opening of resident embassies in the two countries would elevate bilateral relations. The ministers recalled the working visit of Prime Minister Hun Sen to Turkey in October 2018, which inaugurated a new era of dynamic cooperation between Cambodia and Turkey.

“The two ministers expressed their willingness to further explore and expand cooperation between the two countries commensurate with the potential in the areas of trade, education, health, textiles, transport, construction, energy, agriculture, tourism and demining,” the ministry said.

It added that the two ministers were resolved to further elevate cooperation on a parliamentary level through the signing of an MoU. Sokhonn also congratulated Turkey for successfully producing a local Covid-19 vaccine (Turkovac). The two ministers praised each other for their success in containing the spread of the virus and reopening their respective countries, and they committed to mutual recognition of vaccine certificates.

Sokhonn conveyed the appreciation of the Cambodian government to Turkey for providing development assistance to Cambodia in various areas such as education, healthcare, flood relief assistance and the current housing project that is being undertaken by the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency in Kandal province’s Sa’ang district.

Cavusoglu also pledged more scholarships for Cambodian students and officials this year.

According to the press release, the two ministers noted the exchange of mutual support in international bodies, with Turkey looking forward to elevating its dialogue with ASEAN.

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