Prime Minister Hun Sen received the prestigious award of “Lifetime Achievement of Outstanding Leaders” from the Strategic Institute for Asia-Pacific (KSI) based in Malaysia.
The award was given in recognition of Mr Hun Sen’s successful leadership of the ASEAN Summit for the third time and leadership in overcoming the Covid-19 crisis in Cambodia.
The award was presented by KSI President Tan Sri Michael Yeoh and witnessed by KSI Chairman Tan Sri Majid Khan at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh yesterday.
In a citation at the ceremony, Yeoh said that the Global Chinese Economic and technology Summit (GCET), KSI and the ASEAN Economic Club (AEC) are honored and pleased to present Mr Hun Sen with the 2022 Distinguished World Leaders Award.
He said this Award was given by the Prime Minister for his many years of dedicated service to the people and government of Cambodia as well as ASEAN.
He noted that having become the Prime Minister of Cambodia in 1985, Mr Hun Sen is not only the longest serving Prime Minister in ASEAN but also in the world.
“This year, we witnessed HE Samdech Techo Hun Sen lead ASEAN very well during a difficult and challenging year,” said Yeoh. “His successful ASEAN chairmanship which culminated in the recent ASEAN Summit and related summits last month saw the Prime Minister hosting world leaders such as President Joe Biden, Prime Minister Le Keqiang and leaders from Japan, Korea, Canada, Australia, India, and all ASEAN member states.”
“Under the leadership of His Excellency, he guided ASEAN to consolidate ASEAN Centrality and its post pandemic recovery framework and develop regional cooperation in Digital and Green Economies,” he added.
Yeoh said that Mr Hun Sen’s ASEAN Green Deal proposal is a forward looking initiative that will advance the green economy and sustainability of ASEAN as the world transitions to a net zero future.
“Under Samdech Prime Minister Hun Sen, Cambodia has developed close diplomatic, economic and trade relations with China. China is ASEAN’s largest trading partner and the close relationship between China and ASEAN is good for the future economic development of the region,” he said.
Yeoh said that as the Chair of ASEAN, Mr Hun Sen also safeguarded and strengthened the close relationship between China and ASEAN and greater trade relations and more investment from China would benefit the region.
He also said that Mr Hun Sen has played an important role in improving ASEAN relations not only with China but also with key dialogue partners that culminated in the successful East Asia Summit in Phnom Penh last month.
“For his astute leadership and leadership of ASEAN, Samdech Techo Hun Sen has truly become a World Leader,” Yeoh added.
He also said that in his 37 years as Prime Minister of Cambodia, Mr Hun Sen has brought about successful economic and social transformation in the Kingdom; Brought major infrastructure improvements to Cambodia and modernized its economy.
A KSI statement said the institute regularly evaluates and gives leadership awards to national leaders, entrepreneurs, and civil society organizations for their outstanding achievements.
The decision to award the “Lifetime Achievement of Outstanding Leaders” to the Prime Minister was made after the KSI studied and analyzed in detail his leadership qualities and achievements, it said.
The Institute recognizes Mr Hun Sen’s wisdom, wisdom and conscience towards the country and its people, and that he has worked tirelessly to bring peace, tranquility, progress and prosperity to Cambodia, it added.
The institute also noted Mr Hun Sen’s leadership in overcoming the Covid-19 crisis, saving lives and getting the country out of the economic crisis caused by the Covid-19 epidemic.
The statement said that in addition to the glorious achievements noted by the Institute, Mr Hun Sen’s ASEAN Chairmanship in 2022 has made ASEAN a potential forum for dialogue to resolve global crises and issues more hotter than ever in ASEAN history.
Mr Hun Sen said during the ceremony that the efforts to successfully lead and organize the ASEAN Summit in 2002, 2012 and this year are a source of national pride for Cambodia on the international stage, showing the world the spirit of contribution to to build the ASEAN Community.
He said that this shows the strengthening of multilateral cooperation for peace, stability, security and sustainable development in the world and the region.
This year, Cambodia takes the rotating ASEAN Chairmanship for the third time as the region and the world face pressures from all directions, including geopolitical competition, war, Covid-19, food crisis and energy and the global economic downturn, he said.
Despite many challenges, Cambodia has successfully led ASEAN under the theme “ASEAN working together and addressing all challenges”, which shows the focus of the agenda for peace and cooperation,” added Mr Hun Sen.
“We are trying to mobilize our joint efforts to reduce the impact of confrontations between the superpowers, develop friendly relations, and expand practical cooperation, both socially and economically,” he said. “We need to build trust with partner countries, and especially to promote regional integration and achieve the “Asean Vision 2025,”
KSI is an independent, non-profit organization and a link between government, business, and civil society to turn initiatives into impactful results.
The main goal of the Institute is to build better countries throughout the Asia-Pacific region. KSI is the leading organizer of an influential and innovative conference and forum with the participation of more than 3,000 policy makers, business leaders and NGO leaders through more than 60 high-level events.
Since the end of 2018, KSI is the Secretary of the prestigious Kuala Lumpur Economic Club, the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) and the Rakyat Dialogue Forum.
Kin Phea, director-general of the International Relations Institute of the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said that this award is very fitting for Mr Hun Sen because it reflects his efforts to lead Cambodia and also ASEAN three times.
“Samdech Hun Sen sacrificed a lot to lead the country for many years. In particular, he put his life on the line for peace and the overthrow of the Khmer Rouge regime,” he said.