(Phnom Penh): Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen, at the 3rd Media Correspondent’s Dinner held in the evening of January 11th, 2019 in Koh Pich Conference Hall, had raised eight points to roughly 5,000 local journalists and spokesmen from various government institution as following:
1- Journalists are mirror to reflex the reality of societies,
2- Journalists must continue to be bridge between citizens and royal government,
3- Journalists dare to criticize for constructive criticism in related to government’s, institutions’ and individual policies,
4- Journalists shall contribute and analyze the issues at the level of national, regional and international strategies,
5- Journalists shall carry proper professionalism and enrich its capacities,
6- Journalists shall help eradicate the group of media who are just involved with extortion,
7- To participate in fighting against fake news,
8- Journalists shall improve human resources within its organization and shall be well-aware of modernization of technology.
Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen at the annual dinner talk with journalists confirmed that the government would not establish additional televisions as brought up recently by the ministry of information.
Government leader instead had asked the ministry of information to use the full potential of state-owned TV and media, which it currently has, such as TVK and AKP.
“We are not going to establish additional televisions,” Prime Minister Hun Sen told the crowd journalists, adding that it should better use full-capacities of existing state-television and media outlets and shall increase producing news.
In order to encourage media outlets operating in Cambodia to be “fast and accurate” in reporting news in digital life, Prime Minister Hun Sen announced a competition for four local online medias—Fresh News, Swift News, Thmeythmey and DAP, to compete in term of disseminate news for the position as “Speed with Accuracy” especially for local online media which can produce news in various foreign languages.
Prime Minister Hun Sen admired Fresh News, a local online media, for having news in English and Chinese language versions.
Furthermore, premier Hun Sen also called for social networkers especially Facebook account holders who are Khmer compatriots “to stop insulting, abusing and using immoral words to curse or insults each others on Facebook” saying that it was pretty hard for him to believe that Khmer people has used such bad languages in social media.
In relation to media sector, Samdach Decho Hun Sen also brought the issue that Cambodian needs to have 3 important laws related to media and they are not created to censor media outlets in dictatorship way.
Premier Hun Sen said that Cambodia so far has Press Law since 1995 and is under the progress of drafting two separated laws on Access to Information Law and Cybercrime Law.
Prime Minister Hun Sen ordered the Ministry of Information in the 5th mandate of government and the related institutions shall fasten these 2 important laws and to make sure the law on Access to Information and Cybercrime Law must be completely done to put in place for enforcement.
The government leader also ordered the Information Minister Khieu Kanharith has to accelerate the transition from analogue television to digital systems. Prime Minister explained that such change in TV media has been set to be done by 2020 in ASEAN. For Cambodia, Minister of Information Khieu Kanharith had announced that Cambodia will change from analogue to digital system television by 2023. However, Prime Minister Hun Sen said that such process shall be begun tomorrow not to wait to complete in 2023.
Speaking before journalists and government officials at the dinner gathering, Prime Minister Hun Sen also announced a campaign for strengthening Cambodia’s economy to be an independent economy so then Cambodia can be survived with/without Everything But Arms (EBA) policy.
Premier Hun Sen also stressed that from now onward, all border gates would only have immigration and customs officials only and for example Camcontrol will be removed from border gates because by having many arms at the border gates would likely create barricades on trade.
The government also announced that it would reduce scanning cost for all import and exporting goods for the sakes of investors in Cambodia. Prime Minister Hun Sen also announced that he would continue to hold annual talk with journalists.
For 2019, it’s been a third time that Prime Minister Hun Sen held annual dinner meeting with journalists working in Cambodia, in which the first meeting took place on January 14th 2017 and the second time was held on January 21st, 2018.