Cambodia-based Kerry Worldbridge Logistics and InSITE Bavaria yesterday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to conduct a feasibility study to develop the first German-Cambodian industry and technology cluster at Kerry Worldbridge Special Economic Zone, which is located around 17km south of Phnom Penh along National Road 2.
The cluster is to optimise Cambodian value chains and develop small and medium sized companies, using German know-how to make businesses suitable for Cambodian needs.
A joint action plan will include project and investment initiatives, in particular in the areas of technology scouting, vocational training, management and development of the SEZ, investment support, international trade platforms and logistics.
Sear Rithy, director of Kerry Worldbridge Logistics, said the MoU was a milestone towards a study on which industrial segments would attract German and other key investors to the SEZ.
He said the SEZ will provide full-option solutions with one-stop services to investors. Full-option solutions would facilitate administration and paper work, registration, logistic and labor.
“This MoU will lead to establish and provide new solutions for the main segments including cooperation on skill development, infrastructure, logistics, and investment incentives,” said Rithy.
“It will show another step to strengthen the relationship between Cambodia and Germany as well as with the EU since Germany and the EU have actively contributed to develop Cambodia with some main sectors,” said Rithy.
Kerry WorldBridge will target the non-garment sector and industries with high value-added services.
Kerry WorldBridge Logistics SEZ chief operations officer Charles Esterhoy said, “Kerry WorldBridge and InSITE BAVARIA are keen to know about the challenges faced in the industrial development of Cambodia and have specifically identified the challenges as the key area of cooperation in this MoU.
“We describe this as the working MoU from the first meeting to overcome the challenges. It does not come overnight and both ourselves and InSITE Bavaria understood from the beginning that in order to achieve a manufacturing environment and business standard for German Industry, we will require the cooperative and coordinative effort of both governments, the private sector and the foreign business community in Cambodia and many institutions, organization and experts from Germany in Cambodia.”
Daniel Gottschald, managing director of InSITE BAVARIA, said that the feasibility study will be a quick and practical effort which would also set up an innovation plan.
Gottschald said the research and feasibility study will find business opportunities for German and Cambodian companies.
By the middle of the year, Kerry WorldBridge Logistics and InSITE Bavaria will talk about the choice of joint-venture and joint activities to operate in the zone.
“We want the feasibility study as fast as we can. Therefore, by 2018, there will be about five to six German companies to settle down in this area,” added Gottschald.