Phnom Penh (FN), August 7 – The exchange visits of leaders of Cambodia and Sri Lanka has made the two countries’ relations grown more amicable, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen addressed at the Sri Lanka-Cambodia Business Forum, held Wednesday at the Sofitel Phnom Penh.

“Cambodia and Sri Lanka established diplomatic relations more than six decades ago in 1952 but diplomatic ties were disrupted from 1975 by the Cambodian civil war. Both countries re-established diplomatic relations on 6 August 1996 and have grown more amicable through exchanges of visits by leaders of the two countries,” the premier addressed.

“In 1979, as Minister of Foreign Affairs, I led a delegation to attend the Non-Aligned Movement Summit in Colombo — that was my first visit to Sri Lanka,” he continued, adding that: “The Honorable President’s visit at this time signifies the strengthening of relations between our two countries, especially in diplomacy, trade, and tourism.”

It is worth noting that Cambodia-Sri Lanka bilateral trade is still limited. The bilateral trade decreased 50 percent in just a year, from USD 10 million in 2016 to USD 5 million in 2017. In 2018, the bilateral trade was worth only USD 4 million, where Cambodia imported USD 3 million from Sri Lanka, but exported only 1 million to Sri Lanka.

In 2018, Cambodia received 4,000 Sri Lankan tourists. The Government of Sri Lanka used to provide aids to Cambodia’s education and aided USD 200,000 to victims of flood in 2016 and 2017.