On November 28th, 2022, The Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) in cooperation with the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) held a Dissemination Workshop on “Standard Operating Procedures for Public-Private Partnerships Projects” or “SOP for PPPs”, at the Sofitel Phnom Penh Phokeethra hotel chaired by H.E. Dr. Phan Phalla, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Economy and Finance, the high representative of H.E. Akka Pundit Sopheacha Aun Pornmoniroth, Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Economy and Finance to around 200 representatives from the relevant ministries and institutions of the Royal Government of Cambodia, development partners, financial institutions, consulting firms, law firms, insurance companies, national and international companies, and other representatives of the private sector.
H.E. Secretary of State informed that today’s workshop was held after the “SOP for PPP projects”was promulgated under the Sub-decree No. 174 ANKr/BK dated on August 31st, 2022 to widely disseminate to relevant parties to understand the PPP management framework, especially to ensure that all PPP projects have been prepared and implemented under the Law on PPPs and the SOP for PPP projects.
H.E. Secretary of State mentioned that the SOP has been comprehensively prepared based on Cambodia's context and international best practices and was put into a series of consultations within MEF and at the inter-ministerial level. The SOP for PPP Projects consists of 3 Volumes: SOP Vol I: Policies and Procedures, SOP Vol II: Guidelines, and SOP Vol III: Procurement Manual. As a result, the implementation of the SOP is another key achievement of the Royal Government of Cambodia which is congratulated and highly praised by relevant parties including the Asian Development Bank (ADB), World Bank (World Bank), the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), and the P4I team of the Australian government, etc.
H.E. Secretary of State highlighted that the SOP for PPP projects was prepared under four key contexts: 1-gradual decline in grants worldwide as well as the high concession loans to Cambodia, 2-the rise of new challenges due to geographical tensions, the prolonged Russian-Ukrainian war, the rising energy prices in addition to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on Cambodia, 3-the efforts of the RGC to prevent Cambodia from falling into a "price debt" due to the long-term contract with the private sector, which requires a careful and compressive due diligence, and 4-the necessity to attract the private sector’s participation and mobilization its investment to further promote the development of infrastructure and provision of public services to Cambodian people.
H.E. Secretary of Statebelieves the SOP will contribute to the establishment of a strong PPP management framework in Cambodia by prescribing competent institutions, and detail procedures such as project identification and selection, project preparation and appraisal, selection of private partner and consultants, contract management and financial support mechanism, incentives for PPP projects, and monitoring of project implementation. Thus, the implementation of the SOP is to support the Law on PPPs as well as to manage the development and implementation of PPP projects more effectively.
Before ending remarks, H.E. the Secretary of Stateexpressed his deep appreciation to all representatives and encourage them to discuss and ask questions about the SOP for PPP projects. In addition to the Dissemination of Law on PPPs and the SOP for PPPs and informed the Ministry of Economy and Finance will continue to implement the capacity-building plan for PPP mechanism in the near future.