PHNOM PENH - The policy of reform and opening to the outside world adopted by China four decades ago has enabled the world's most populous country to become an engine for global growth, said Cambodian officials and scholars.
"I think China has achieved great success in implementing its reform and opening-up policy over the past 40 years. This policy, under the strong leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), has made China a locomotive for global growth today," said Phay Siphan, Cambodia's secretary of state and spokesman for the Council of Ministers.
The reform and opening-up policy has not only benefited the Chinese people, but also contributed to regional and global stability and prosperity, Siphan said.
The policy has been a tremendous impetus for developing socialism with Chinese characteristics, he said.
The official also hailed the China-proposed initiative on the construction of the Silk Road Economic Belt and the 21st Century Maritime Silk Road (the Belt and Road Initiative), saying it is crucial to infrastructure development in developing countries including Cambodia.
Proposed by China in 2013, the initiative aims to create greater trade, infrastructure and people-to-people links between Asia, Europe, Africa and beyond by reviving and expanding the ancient Silk Road routes.
This initiative will also contribute to China's vision to build a community with a shared future for mankind, he said.
Sok Eysan, a spokesman for the ruling Cambodian People's Party, said the reform and opening-up policy has remarkably changed China's economic landscape and paved the way for China to become a global economic heavyweight.
"China's economic development has been extremely rapid after the adoption of the reform and opening-up policy," he said, adding that the policy has been beneficial to both China and the rest of the world.
Meanwhile, Joseph Matthews, director of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Education Center, said China's economic development in the last four decades was a great inspiration for the least developed countries such as Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar.
"If China can transform its passive and locally driven economy into a vibrant and diverse economy through consistent reforms and expansion, other countries can also do it by following the economic model of China," he said.
Matthews, also a professor at the Beltei International University in Phnom Penh, said the most impressive feature of China's economic success story is that the country is always willing to share its prosperity, technology and wealth with its neighbors as well as underdeveloped countries in Africa and elsewhere.
Kin Phea, director general of the International Relations Institute of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, also spoke positively about China's reform and opening-up, saying the policy is not only a boon to the Chinese people, but also an engine for the world's growth, he said.
"China's successful model of economic development should be a role model for other countries including Cambodia as it helps determine a clear political line for the country's development, expanding the country's influence and enhancing the country's role in regional and global frameworks," Phea said.
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