Phnom Penh (FN), June 25 – Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) Erik Solheim praised Cambodia’s efforts in environmental management, speaking in a meeting with Minister of Environment Say Sam Al on Monday morning at the ministry.

Erik expressed further confidence in Cambodia's implementations of environmental policies and agreements in line with regional and global trends. He highly commended Cambodian Ministry of Environment's work on environmental reform, and Cambodia's commitment to strengthening environmental protection, biodiversity conservation, and sustainable development.

Erik also encouraged Cambodia to continue its implementation on renewable energy, plastic products management, taking into account the principles of reducing, reusing and recycling plastic products.

He requested Cambodia to further strengthen the protection and preservation of natural resources, which are favorable for eco-tourism that will support income for communities in the protected areas.

Minister Say Sam Al highlighted the progress of Cambodia, in particular its environmental protection in the past mandate, conservation of biodiversity, sustainable living as well as modernization of the Ministry of Environment.

One of the Cambodian youngest ministers said that on behalf of a UN member state, Cambodia is ready to cooperate closely with the UN to implement various UN agreements. He also mentioned Cambodia's responsibilities in implementing Paris Accord concerning plastic bags, climate change, and biodiversity conservation.

Following a courtesy visit on Minister Say Sam Al, Erik Solheim led a delegation to meet with National Council for Sustainable Development to strengthen cooperation between Cambodia and the United Nations Environment Program.