China's reform, opening-up benefit whole world: Cambodian scholar

Updated: 2018-03-08

PHNOM PENH - China's policy of reform and opening-up has not only led to great socio-economic achievements in the country, but also proved beneficial to the whole world, a Cambodian scholar said in Phnom Penh.

Joseph Matthews, director of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Education Center, said that in the last four decades since China adopted the reform and opening-up policy, the country has scored great economic achievement and tremendously improved the living conditions of its people.

"Now, China proudly holds the title of the second biggest economy in the world," he told Xinhua in an interview ahead of China's two sessions, namely, the annual sessions of China's top legislative and advisory bodies.

"China's opening-up policy is beneficial to all countries including Cambodia," he noted.

Matthews, also a professor at the Beltei International University in Phnom Penh, 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.

The professor 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.

He also said that the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by China offers new opportunities for global growth.

Commenting on the proposed inclusion of "building a community with a shared future for humanity" in the constitution during the two sessions in Beijing, he said it truly reflected China's commitment to building a world of peace and prosperity.

Talking about China-Cambodia ties, Matthews said the relations should be a "role model" for other countries, saying that although China is a big country, it treats Cambodia, a small country, as an equal.