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Former Malaysia PM Mahathir Mohamad Meets Khmer Leaders

Former Malaysia Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad Tuesday meets separately with Prime Minister Hun Sen and Prince Ranariddh for talks on Malaysia's economic achievements and recent political situation in Cambodia.

Mr. Mahathir Mohamad arrives in Cambodia on Sunday with the invitation of the Japan Embassy.

Mr. Mohamad left his post last year. He gives a speech in Phnom Penh, Cambodia on Malaysia's economic success taking model from Japan.

Mr. Hun Sen praises Mr. Mohamad for leaving a legacy for the Malaysian people as a model for his successor.

Giving a speech at a seminar at the Royal Phnom Penh University Tuesday, which Mr. Mohamad attends, Mr. Hun Sen says that Cambodia's economy is improving but with a blurry aspect.

By comparing his ruling with two statesmen's leadership, whom he must follow in constructing his country for economic prosperity, Mr. Hun Sen says that by looking East for the development in the region, the looking East principles are important for Cambodia, after this country joins WTO, focusing on competition, which is stated in her membership in the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Opposition Sam Rainsy party's (SRP) legislator Son Chhay, calls the meeting between the two leaders a beginning of an important step which the Khmer leaders should focus on for Cambodia's economic development.

He says that Malaysia's success for the past 20 years is a model that Cambodia should consider and implement.

According to a report, about 35% Cambodians live under poverty level, and poor Cambodians make less than one dollar a day.

About eighty percent of Cambodians rely on agriculture. Cambodia still depends on about 500 million dollars in foreign aids every year.