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Airport cleaners in face masks observe a Cambodian TV reporter as a plane arrives from China to Cambodia with supplies and doctors donated to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at Phnom Penh International Airport in Cambodia. -REUTERS pic
Airport cleaners in face masks observe a Cambodian TV reporter as a plane arrives from China to Cambodia with supplies and doctors donated to contain the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at Phnom Penh International Airport in Cambodia. -REUTERS pic

TRADE between Cambodia and Vietnam is expected to continue as normal despite new border control measures due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The two nations hope to achieve US$5 billion (RM22.2 billion) in trade by the end of the year.

A Vietnamese embassy official in Cambodia told the Phnom Penh Post that Vietnam has restricted the movement of people across the border with Cambodia to stop the spread of the coronavirus, but trade between the nations continues.

“When it comes to trade, it is business as usual. Vietnamese and Cambodian officials will work together to make sure all these measures are implemented efficiently.

“However, a drop in trade volume cannot be avoided because the pandemic is going to affect economic activity at a global level.

“To combat the effect on the economy by the virus, Vietnam has prepared a trade promotion plan to recover economically as soon as Covid-19 subsides. Trade between the two nations will recover soon.”

In a Facebook post on Wednesday, Vietnamese ambassador Minh Quang Vu said stricter checks are being carried out at the border.

The ambassador also said foreigners are not allowed to enter Vietnam for the next 30 days. The ban does not apply to diplomats.

He said mandatory quarantine at designated facilities has been expanded to include visitors from the United States, the European Union and Asean countries.

Minh said the measures aim to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The Cambodian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation had also issued a statement requesting the Vietnamese government to implement stricter travel restrictions for Vietnamese, while leaving the border open for the exchange of goods.

“Cambodia proposes that the two countries work together to facilitate and ensure that the transport of goods across the common border can be carried out without disruption,” the statement said.

Cambodia Chamber of Commerce vice-president Lim Heng said the measures by the Vietnamese government will have a significant impact on the tourism sector.

“Trade won’t be significantly affected. The most significant impact will be on the tourism sector.”

Leaders of the two countries have pledged to achieve US$5 billion (RM22.2 billion) in trade a year by the end of the year.

Data from the Vietnam embassy said last year’s trade reached US$4.7 billion (RM20.8 billion), an increase of 23.8 per cent from 2017.

Covid-19

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