The European Investment Bank (EIB) has secured $17.4 million from the European Union to invest in sustainable agriculture projects in Cambodia. The EU bank will invest the money in the Sustainable Assets for Agriculture Markets, Business and Trade (SAAMBAT) project. A tenth of the money is earmarked for preparation to speed up the implementation of the project.
SAAMBAT is designed to improve the living standards of 200,000 rural Cambodian families and help them do business by improving infrastructure and ensuring a reliable food supply. It aims to create 4,500 jobs with an emphasis on youth employment. The project is a partnership between the International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD), the EIB and the Cambodian government.
“The EIB is very proud of our continued contribution to Cambodia’s faster recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic but also to its long-term, sustainable and green development,” said EIB Vice-President Kris Peeters, who is in charge of EIB operations in Cambodia, “This EU grant is another step towards an even closer partnership between the European Union and Cambodia and, more importantly, will have a direct impact on the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of Cambodians.”
Almost $60 million has already been invested in the project by the EIB, boosted by a $16 million contribution from the EU under its Team Europe project to help countries recover from the economic effects of the Coronavirus pandemic.
The money is being spent on building 650 kilometres (km) of paved road and 150 km of gravel road. It will also be used to improve 50 rural markets and 25 other facilities including ferry landings and farm produce pickup points.
This article was first published in Khmer Times. All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.