The Cambodian government has adopted a national strategic development plan for poverty reduction for 2006-2010, which is guided by the Millennium Development Goals, and forms the basis of cooperation with the European Union (EU). Failure to resolve governance issues is regarded as a major obstacle to poverty reduction, growth and the effectiveness of aid.
EU assistance - 2007-2013
An EU-Cambodia Country Strategy Paper 2007-2013 [441 KB] was drawn up by the European Commission with two main targets:
- Cambodia’s national strategic development plan
- Basic education
In addition, trade-related assistance is being provided during this period with support for EU-Cambodia cooperation and dialogue in the field of governance and human rights. The multi-annual indicative programme covering the first four years (2007-2010) allocates €76 million to these areas.
Support for the development plan comes mainly through a programme on poverty led by the World Bank, plus technical assistance largely on public financial management. The Commission is a lead donor in basic education and is supporting the Cambodian government in a sector-wide approach to policy reform. The trade-related assistance supports preparation for Cambodia's possible adherence to an Association of South-East Asian Nations (ASEAN) free trade agreement and its further economic integration into the region.Regional and thematic programmes are also available to support organisations in Cambodia.
The EU-Cambodia Country Strategy Paper (2004-2006) [217 KB] targeted poverty in rural areas through economic development and development of the social sector – health and education. For 2002 to 2004, the Commission allocated €68.7 million for:
- Rural livelihoods
- Support to programmes having a direct impact on the quality and efficiency of basic education, including teacher development and education service efficiency; scholarships and incentives for equitable access; and sustainable provision of core instructional materials
- The health sector with particular support to establish a sector-wide approach
Another €29.3 million was allocated for 2005 to 2006 to support small and medium-sized enterprises in the agro-industry, to the trade sector, to a sector-wide approach in education, and to public finance management reform.
Although organisations working in Cambodia have been eligible for funding through the Asia regional programmes on education, trade and investment and the environment, only 32 projects have so far involved Cambodian partners.
The European External Action Service is responsible for drawing up the EU-Cambodia cooperation strategy.
The Delegation of the European Union to Cambodia is responsible for activities in the country.