Remarks
Kurt M. Campbell
Assistant Secretary, Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
May 25, 2012


First of all, let me just say that on behalf of the United States government, we are so thrilled to be here in Cambodia for the Senior Officials Meeting. I’ve had a chance yesterday to meet with the Prime Minister and now I have had a very good discussion with the Foreign Minister. I think as you all know Secretary Clinton has invited him to the United States. He will be there early next month and we have had an opportunity to review all the important things that the United States is doing in Southeast Asia, particularly in Cambodia.

I’d just like to underscore that in addition to all the important bilateral work that we are undertaking and our multilateral engagement in terms of the Lower Mekong Initiative and the like, we are also bringing Secretary Clinton in July the largest ever business group to Cambodia as part of our multi-faceted engagement to suggest our deep desire to have a strong and deeper ties between our business communities in the United States and ASEAN. We are thrilled at the support that we have received from the Cambodian government. Daisy Liu [of ConocoPhillips] and Steve Glick [of Chevron] have made very generous contributions in terms of hard drives and also flash drives to enable the ASEAN Secretariat to be fully prepared and capable to deal with the enormous number of people that will be coming to Cambodia to celebrate not only the ASEAN Regional Forum, but [also] the East Asia Summit. This is a critical year – it’s the tenth anniversary since the statement of conduct with regard to the South China Sea. We’re at a critical period. We’re counting on the leadership of Cambodia to ensure the future of peace and prosperity.

I have been joined here today with my wonderful colleague from ASEAN, Ambassador Carden in Jakarta, to make a very strong commitment on the part of the United States to an enduring commitment to the Asia-Pacific region and to ASEAN as a whole, and I want to personally thank Daisy and Steve for their commitment to this process and to thank you, Foreign Minister, for all that you have done to build stronger relations between the United States and Cambodia. So thank you all.

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[This is a mobile copy of Remarks in Cambodia]