A memorandum of Understanding was signed by H.E. Dr. Devyani Khobragade, Ambassador of India to the Kingdom of Cambodia, with H.E. Cham Prasidh, Senior Minister and Minister of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation (MISTI), Royal Government of Cambodia, on 31st March 2022, for a project on “Enrichment in Science, Technology and Innovation, Kampot Province, Cambodia (KESTI) of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation MISTI”. The ceremony was held at the Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology, and Innovation and graced by many senior officials of MISTI besides other distinguished guests.
The project addresses the national platform of promoting human resources in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), as stated in Cambodia’s National Development Plan. This project provides benefits beyond the direct beneficiaries from school to the community in terms of potential job opportunities. The direct beneficiaries of this project are students and teachers at selected public high schools in Kampot Province.
This initiative is a part of the Government of India’s Quick Impact Project (QIP) Scheme under the framework of the Mekong Ganga Cooperation. The government of India cooperates with the Royal Government of Cambodia on many grant assistance programs that contribute significantly to the socio-economic development of the people of Cambodia. Under QIP Scheme, the Government of India implements 10 projects every year in Cambodia by providing funding of up to USD 50,000 each per project. Since 2015-16, the Government of India has approved 46 projects in the fields of IT, agriculture, health, sanitation, women’s empowerment, child welfare, rural development, social infrastructure (Including Capacity Building), environment, etc. Out of 46 projects, 21 projects have already been completed and the remaining 25 projects are at various stages of execution. These projects have received an overwhelming response and created a distinct and visible impact not only among the beneficiaries but also in the larger community.
Speaking on the occasion, H.E. Cham Prasidh thanked the Government of India and the Embassy of India for considering the project and signing the MoU within a short period. He hoped that this would help the students in STEM education and conveyed that his Ministry is also keen to submit one more proposal under the Quick Impact Project Scheme of the Government of India soon.
While expressing her appreciation for the signing of the MoU, H.E. Dr. Devyani Khobragade, Ambassador of India, stated that this project would be completed in one year. Ambassador also stated that the Embassy would be willing to support another project to help students in STEM education. She also chose the occasion to request the minister to consider having a formal mechanism in the form of setting up a Joint Working Group on Science & Technology between India and Cambodia so those subject experts can brainstorm various ideas to work together in the field of science and technology and also explore opportunities for having institutional linkages between the two countries. She stressed the positive impact of QIP projects on the enhancement of the overall bilateral relationship and goodwill between the people of India and Cambodia. This year, the focus of QIPs will be on health, tourism development, education-digital education with a particular focus on women’s literacy.
Source: India in Cambodia (Embassy of India, Phnom Penh)