Friday, June 4, 2010

Keynote Address at theGround Breaking of the Construction of Charey-Phnom Penh Hospital, Boeung Snor Village, Nirouth Commune, Meanchey District

Phnom Penh, May 15, 2010

Your Venerable Head of Monks,

Your Venerable Monks

Your Excellency LE KHA PHIEU, Former Secretary General of the Communist Part of Vietnam and the delegates,

Excellencies, Oknhas, Distinguished National and International Guests,

Dear the Compatriots,

Today it is my pleasure to attend the “Ground Breaking of the Construction of Charey-Phnom Penh Hospital”. The hospital indeed attests to the strong cooperation between the Kingdom of Cambodia and Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Taking this opportunity, on behalf of the people and Royal Government of Cambodia I would like to convey profound gratitude to the people and government of Vietnam, through H.E. LE KHA PHIEU, former secretary general of the Communist Party of Vietnam, for the support given to Cambodia during hardship and its contribution in socio-economic development and poverty reduction in Cambodia.

Following the victory against the Pol Pot Regime on 7 January 1979, Cambodia strived to overcome thousands of problems, including the restoration and development of health sector destroyed by the war. Starting from scratch left by the war, we managed to build and run health centers in communes, districts, and municipalities/provinces to provide consultation, health care and treatment services to the people.

Both countries have been working closely in all sectors, including bilateral cooperation and investment, trade, road-bridge infrastructure, agriculture development, education, mine and energy and so forth. These reflect the actual needs of Cambodian people and create a favorable condition for Cambodia’s integration into the region and the globe on egalitarian status. During the global crisis, Vietnam ranked first in terms of FDI flow to Cambodia. Last year, Vietnamese investors invested around USD 900 million in Cambodia. Trade between both countries reached USD 2 billion in 2009; the figure may exceed USD 2 billion in 2010.

According to H.E. Mom BunHeng, Minister of Health, the groundbreaking of the construction of Charey-Phnom Penh hospital is another important event as Cambodia soon will have an international hospital and Cambodian people will have access to quality health services provided domestically. This will not only boost confidence on the quality of health services, but also economic efficiency and reputation of the country.

This achievement will represent another contribution in health sector from the people and government of Vietnam as Cambodia is striving to improve both accessibility and quality of health services. This also reflects improved public-private partnership since we regard private participation as Engine of Growth and a priceless achievement in social welfare and public health in Cambodia.

Cambodia is building a concrete foundation to underpin growth in the long run. In particular, the Royal Government has been implementing Health Sector Development Plan 2008 – 2015 to improve accessibility and quality of health services and behavior of health service providers, ensure sufficient capital flow, strengthen medical staff’s competency, improve health information system for better health financing and governance, management of medical equipments and medicines and regulation of pharmaceutical and medical services provided by the private sector.

The Royal Government has been working hard to assure a favorable business climate that is stable, transparent and predictable for the growth of private sector. On this basis, it has been actively implementing some key policies to promote private-government partnership, facilitate trade, strengthen investment climate, ensure participation of private sector in infrastructure development, and strengthen partnership in health sector especially with development partners to enhance effectiveness of health service delivery. This will translate into poverty reduction and socio-economic development as well as attainment of the spirit of the Rectangular Strategy i.e. growth, employment, equity and efficiency.

In this connection, on behalf of the Royal Government, I would like to compliment Ho Chi Minh City Medical Investment Joint Stock Company and Sok Kong Import Export Co. Ltd on their joint effort with Phnom Penh Municipality and local authority to turn this project into a prideful reality.

Undeniably, utilizing appropriate medical equipment for diagnosis and treatment could address some health challenges in both the present and future time. Therefore, investment in modern medical technologies—modern tools, equipments and facilities—is very important and a key component to enhance service quality. Even with individuals’ competency, technology per se is not enough. Quality of service depends on some other essential aspects such as prevention of infection, hygiene and good environment in hospitals as well as professionalism in treatment. In this regard, we should place attention on human resource factor and provide training to physicians, doctors and skilled staff to acquire new knowledge and technology and to double effectiveness of health services.

Physician and medical staff, whose obligation is to deliver treatment and health care services must improve their attitude and follow the professional code of conduct when communicating with and providing treatment and health care services to patients. Undoubtedly, this work must base on technical principle, virtue, good conduct and firm stand as a dependable guardian of patients. Moreover, each hospital should continue to promote medical research and strengthen cooperation with medical universities, private sector, NGOs, professional associations and research unit of the Health Ministry to share experiences and development of this field. Moreover, I would like to urge all hospitals and clinics not to use counterfeit medicines and medical equipments, which may exacerbate illness of patients.

In short, by providing responsible health care services, we could change the attitude of patients seeking consultation, diagnosis, treatment and care services, which lead to the improvement, confidence and economic efficiency of public health in Cambodia. This will genuinely contribute to economic growth and better reputation of the country.

In addition to existing achievements, Cambodia needs more contribution from development partners and private sector for development and investment in health sector to improve welfare as a whole. Moreover, there are big potentials for investment in some sectors including agriculture, agro-industry, infrastructure, labor-intensive manufacturing, export-oriented industry, oil, natural gas, mining and tourism. Those potentials have not been fully tapped and represent a great opportunity for investors. Furthermore, development cooperation Asean-Mekong opens up even more. Therefore, I am pleased to urge Vietnamese investors to come to assess the possibility of investment and discuss with Cambodian partners. I strongly believe that Vietnamese investors and businessmen will be successful in turning opportunities in Cambodia into successful investment projects such as rubber processing, fertilize production, hydro-electricity power plant, telecommunication, banking and finance, mining, tourism and civil aviation. In this light, on behalf of the Royal Government, as always, I declare the openness of Cambodia’s economy for all investors with no racial discrimination and continue to offer a favorable climate for investment to accelerate growth.

Once again, I would to encourage cooperation between Ho Chi Minh City Medical Investment Joint Stock Company and Sok Kong Import Export Co. Ltd as well as all levels of local authorities to complete the construction of this hospital as planned. Moreover, this hospital must take part to realize the vision of Cambodia Health Sector Development, especially with regard to restoration and expansion of physical infrastructure as well as institutional and human capacity development to expand the coverage of health service delivery and respond to people’s needs. In this spirit, I strongly hope that Vietnam will boost the bilateral cooperation and jointly seek new opportunities for prosperity and long amity tie of both countries.

Finally, along with the ground breaking for the construction of Charey-Phnom Penh Hospital, I would like to wish your venerable monks, His Excellency LE KHA PHIEU and delegates, Excellencies, Oknhas, ladies and gentlemen, and all the compatriots four gems of Buddhist blessing.

Thank you for your attention!

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