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The Threat of Garbage

It’s Khmer New Year B.E. 2561 and we should choose a better topic to celebrate here. But I refuse to go to the Kep Beach to see the many visitors from Phnom Penh for a reason: garbage. At this very moment, while all Cambodians celebrate the new year with all happiness and cheh, cheh, cheh… all Cambodian beautiful spots are target of thousands of plastic, empty bottles, polystyrene utensils, all, spread everywhere by the happy Cambodian families celebrating with joy and love the Khmer New Year. Garbage on the pagodas, garbage along the roads, garbage on beaches and garbage on the national parks… practically every single corner of the country where a good road can reach for their vehicles.

Garbage at the waterfall

The beautiful waterfall of Cathien in Ratanakiri… You can walk behind the waterfall, on ancient caves carved by the stream. But even here you find plastic bottles… The people who let them, surely enjoy the beauty of the place, but their mind was too short to understand that they could bring their garbage with them and they preferred to let them here…

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Working in Cambodia

If you want to work in Cambodia, be aware of the following facts:

  • Cambodia is a country of low income. It means that the minimum wage is $150 per month. Foreigners with a professional background could get between $500 and $1,000.
  • You must get the Business Visa – now you can apply for it online or upon arrival… a visa for 6 to 12 months. Some westerners look down on Cambodian authorities and stay in the country without a legal permit, thinking that they are smarter… most of these smart guys have been deported as fast as they think. Get your proper permissions on time.
  • Cambodia needs a lot of skilfull personnel for its development. There is a big young population but the skill formation remains low. It gives a lot of opportunities for professional foreigners – for now…. until the Cambodian youth get the point and take those places.

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Tum Teav alive today

If you want to understand many things of the Cambodian mentality and old traditions that still around, Tum Teav is a film you should watch. Although it is seen as an old story where mothers determine the husband for their daughters upon social and economic considerations, the true is that such practice continues present in modern Cambodia.

You can get the version with English subtitles in this link. Read More…

Brexit & Cambodia

  • Experts predict little impact for ASEAN after Brexit.
  • Cambodia has its own economical agreements with UK that would gain more meaning in the coming months… it could be of benefit.
  • British tourism could be globally reduced in the coming months due to economical upheaval in UK after Brexit. Between January and February 2015, Cambodia welcomed 30,000 British tourists. 

Still too early to evaluate how the Brexit will affect the Cambodian economy. However, the event is currently in the heat of speculations from around the world in this unprecedented moment in the history of the European Union. Brexit, a short expression for Britain Exit [EU], was the referendum of the United Kingdom on its continuity as a member of EU, where 48.1 % voting to remain and 51.9 % winning the leave.

Samdech Hun Sen and Lord Puttman in October 2014 in Phnom Penh Cambodia UK relations

Samdech Hun Sen meets Lord David Puttman in October 2014 in Phnom Penh. At the time, Cambodian government urged UK to increase investments in the Asian country. Photo Chey Phoumipul, Courtesy AKP.

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