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Chinese President to Meet Cambodian King During State Visit


Phnom Penh Authorities installed portraits of Chinese President Xi Jinpin and Cambodia King, Norodom Sihamoni in a Phnom Penh's garden on October 11, 2016. Xi will pay his two-day state visit in Cambodia starting from Thursday this week. (Neou Vannarin/VOA Khmer)

Phnom Penh Authorities installed portraits of Chinese President Xi Jinpin and Cambodia King, Norodom Sihamoni in a Phnom Penh's garden on October 11, 2016. Xi will pay his two-day state visit in Cambodia starting from Thursday this week. (Neou Vannarin/VOA Khmer)

China has become Cambodia’s largest aid donor and lender, giving about $15 billion to its Southeast Asian ally over the past 20 years.

Chinese President Xi Jinping will meet with Cambodian King Norodom Sihamoni during a two-day visit to the country later this month, according to a statement from the foreign ministry.

The visit is due to begin on Thursday and will also see Xi meet with Prime Minister Hun Sen, with whom he is expected to sign more than two dozen agreements.

China has become Cambodia’s largest aid donor and lender, giving about $15 billion to its Southeast Asian ally over the past 20 years.

Last year, China pledged at least $600 million in additional assistance.

China has expanded its global footprint through massive investment in large infrastructure projects, including in Cambodia, where its state-operated enterprises have vast interests in mining, tourism and hydropower development.

Meas Ny, an analyst, said Cambodia could be in “jeopardy” if it relied too much on one foreign power for assistance.

Cambodia has also been criticized for appearing to back China in a dispute over the South China Sea with its Asean neighbors, however, Cambodia has denied the claim.

“When everything relies on one country, we are under the influence of that country,” said Ny. “This will lead us to lose our full independence.”

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