Phnom Penh (FN), Marc. 20 – Cambodian prime minister Hun Sen said that 20 years of the implementation of the Public Financial Management Reform Program (PFMRP) has made many historical achievements in Cambodia in terms of the socio-economic development.

The premier spoke at the implementation of the PFMRP Phase 4 (2023-2027), held on Monday (Mar 20) at Sokha Phnom Penh Hotel.

"The PFMRP has now reached its final phase, Phase IV, after being implemented for almost 20 years. I still remember the time I personally presided over the implementation of the first phase of this reform program in December 2004,” the premier underlined.

Premier Hun Sen added that with an unwavering will, the Royal Government of Cambodia has pushed for the implementation of this significant reform program through three major stages, including Phase I from 2004 to 2008 (to increase budget credibility), Phase II from 2009-2015 (to increase financial accountability), Phase III from 2016 to 2022 (to establish budget‐policy linkages), and Phase IV from 2023 to 2027 (to increase performance accountability).

Samdech continued, "public financial reform over the past 20 years has made many historic achievements in Cambodia, both in terms of improving the governance of public financial management and in terms of socio-economic development of Cambodia.”

The economic and social progress is closely linked to the hypothesis of managing public finances or the national budget, the premier added.

Samdech also reminded that in 2003, before the implementation of the public financial reform program, the national budget revenue was only about 1,821 billion riels, while the national budget expenditure is about 2,994 billion riels.

"Twenty years later, the national budget revenue in 2023 is estimated at 32,936 billion riels and the total national budget expenditure is about 41,537 billion riels,” the premier added.

Through this public financial reform, Samdech affirmed that this optimistic indicator is one of the most important economic chains that make Cambodia achieve growth and continue to stabilize its economic growth. The kingdom has elevated itself from a low-middle income country in 2015 to an upper-middle income country by 2030 and a high-income country by 2050.

The Royal Government has been able to promote the living standards of the people as well the quality of civil servants. Public institutions and public services have improved through the four priorities set in the government’s Rectangular Strategy, the premier underlined.

On that occasion, Samdech also said that all these achievements are a significant contribution to reducing poverty in Cambodia, in particular good public financial system has provided the Royal Government with sufficient savings to deal with any unforeseeable problems in the past.

Samdech added that in the cause of independence and national sovereignty, the good hypothesis of the public financial management reform program has strengthened the ownership and role of the Royal Government of Cambodia in taking responsibility in the cause of independence and national sovereignty through reducing its dependence on foreign borrowing, which currently accounts for less than 20 percent of the total national budget.