Cambodia is expected to receive $40 million worth of weapon bought from China in August.
Minister of Defense Tea Banh told VOA Khmer on Wednesday that the weapons are in transit to Cambodia.
“[They] are on the way,” said the minister by phone. “But there is still no information about when [they] will arrive exactly,” he added.
On Monday, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen declared that Cambodia has increased its arms purchases from China. He said his government had pledged $40 million to buy “tens of thousands of additional weapons” from Beijing and that they were being shipped.
The additional arms are to modernize Cambodia military, he said.
The latest arms deal is an addition to a previous total of $200 million in arms deals with China.
Tea Banh said the new Chinese-made weapons will replace older ones that are still in use but he did not specify the types of weapon.
“The purchase is related to the price we negotiated,” said Tea Banh. “We bought [the weapons] because (China) gave us the friendship price (because) we are too poor.”
Independent political analyst Em Sovannara said that the fact that the government had announced the arms purchase was “transparency in using national budget” but that “it has shown Cambodia's increased tilt toward China.”