British Ambassador Tina Redshaw has again sought to clarify that recent rumours of a trade deal being “on the horizon” between the UK and Cambodia were “not true”.
It is the second time that the ambassador has had to deny speculation that the two countries had been discussing any form of a free-trade agreement, after it was again reported in local media recently.
“No trade talks are going on between the UK and Cambodia and, for the moment, there is no timetable for when trade talks would begin,” the ambassador said.
“The Department of International Trade is currently negotiating a number of trade deals across the globe and cannot be negotiating with every country at the same time,” she added.
The ambassador also said that she did not know from where the rumours originated. However, she admitted the UK is undergoing several trade talks around the world after leaving the European Union earlier this year.
The British Embassy’s Deputy Head of Mission in Cambodia Marc Tharye did attend a high-level meeting with Secretary of State at the Ministry of Commerce Sok Sopheak last month.
Thayre began his role in August this year. Before that he was head of political, press and projects at the British High Commission in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania, from 2017.
The UK officially left the European Union on Jan 31, but is in a so-called transition period until Dec 31, during which it must abide by EU rules and regulations.
Figures from the Ministry of Commerce show that Cambodia mainly exports garments and footwear, milled rice and bicycles to the UK.
This article was first published in Khmer Times. All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.