Reforms at the Ministry of Commerce

My morning was well-spent attending a seminar delivered by the Minister himself, where he talked about new reforms that the Ministry has been working on, so that it can optimize its role in serving the development of Cambodia. It was inspiring to see and listen to a leader of such passion, ideas, ambition and good heart for Cambodia and like my friend said, I hope it was all genuine and true.


For those that were not there at the event, let me share a few things that I noted down from the remark and presentation that the Minister Sun Chanthol delivered:

Elimination of C/O (Certification of Origin): He said, unlike before, exporting to countries like the US do not require certificates of origin anymore, so there’s no need to create hassles by requiring our farmers, investors and businessmen to waste resources and slow down their operation by requesting issuance of C/O from the MoC. A C/O costs 38$ and the making of it needs signatures and stamp print of certain authority at the Ministry, which also incurs more workload for the Ministry. This might also mean less revenue for the Ministry but they are willing to trade this for more efficiency and for encouragement for our investors/businessmen/exporters.

Online Platform: The Ministry aims to put in place an efficient online platform to serve the needs of entrepreneurs and relevant stakeholders. Some officers will be sent to study good case practices of online operation from the government of Singapore, so that in the future, we all don’t have to endure unnecessary red tapes of, for example, registering a certain trademarks or names. The idea is so that certain names/trademarks/brands etc. can be checked for availability online and the registration process only includes several simple steps, all of which can be completed online from the comfort of our own room.

Research Institute for Farmers: With the support of World Bank (about 60,000 USD in funding), the Ministry is investing in a research institute that works on collecting and analyzing data to arrive at valuable information to provide to our local farmers so that they can make well informed decisions. Currently, a lot of farmers make some really big decisions by following the crowd and different rumors, which sometimes results in big losses and substantial drop in the values of their production. Lack of information is seen as a root cause to this problem and the institute is meant to tackle exactly this.

Hotline: Highly responsive hotline will be put in place so that any irregularities, including corruption, violation of human rights, or any problems concerning food and agricultural sectors etc. can be instantly, and in a simple way, reported.

Great Effort in Attracting Investors: The Ministry and authorities involved have put in big efforts in activities that can promote Cambodia as a golden destination for investment. Cambodia has been presented as the centre of ASEAN. “Invest in Cambodia, we’ll have 14.7 million customers; Invest in Cambodia and you’ll have 600 million customers (ASEAN population) at your doorsteps.” The Minister has been travelling to potential countries, sometimes with groups of local businessmen, to entice different stakeholders to come invest in Cambodia.

Online Presence: It has been 7 months since the creation of MoC’s facebook fan page. Currently there are about 34k likes, which is expected to grow to 100k soon. The Ministry is also reforming their website, renovating its look and ensuring high level of transparency towards the public through the highly engaging world of the internet. IMAG2564

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Beautiful Places around the World

Siem Reap, Cambodia
siem reap

Koh Kong & Sihanoukville, Cambodia
kohkong kps

Takeo, Cambodia

Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Kratie, Cambodia


Other province, Cambodia

other provinces


Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
kuala lumpur



 Hong Kong








Dubai, the United Arab Emirates


Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates

Moscow, Russia


St. Petersberg, Russia

Istanbul, Turkey


Corum, Turkey

Athens, Greece

Malta, Malta

Victoria, Malta

Rome, Italy & Vatican City

Le Cinque Terre, Italy

Pisa, Italy

Florence, Italy


Padua, Italy


Venice, Italy


Vicenza, Italy

Verona, Italy


Milan, Italy

Trento, Italy

Feltre & Pedavena, Italy

Feltre and Pedavenaa

Ferrara, Italy
castello estense-ferrara

Cittadella & Marostica, Italy

Rhine Falls, Switzerland

Zurich, Switzerland

Heidelberg, Germany

Speyer, Germany

Munich, Germany

Bled, Slovenia

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Graz, Austria

Vienna, Austria

Paris, France

Belgrade, Serbia

Budapest, Hungary


The United States of America

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.” – St. Augustine

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” – Mark Twain

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July 1st, 2013: MCP, MC, Conferences, ICs, IPMs,…. are all now in the past. The past 4 years was more than just a responsibility; it was a privilege. I thought I was someone outstanding until I joined AIESEC and saw how big the world really is and how small I actually was. It was that realization that keeps pushing me to strive to be always better. 

I am so thankful for everything and everyone that has crossed my path over the years. Thanks for making me a better person, for allowing me to finally have done something that I am and will always be proud of! Thanks for the opportunities, for the passion, for the network, and for all the wonderful things that have happened to me. I really have lived a really great university life. :’)

As I’m opening a new chapter, my wish for this amazing organization is for it to endlessly advance, continuing to enable more and more young Cambodians to live the experience as great or even greater than the one I had the privilege to live.

So that was something I reflected on, as I was closing my AIESEC experience. Via this post, I would like to paint a clearer picture of how my whole AIESEC experience looked like. Of course, this is no detailed account of everything that happened and that I got to experience through AIESEC, because that would be endless; it’s just a recap of the major things I did.

December 2008
A friend of mine, Chetra, told me about a group of Europeans coming to PUC to promote a leadership and international experience opportunity. And I submitted my application.

Jan 10, 2009
Having joined the Leadership Tournament (the AIESEC Assessment Centre) and been selected as one of the five people, I was officially the Local Committee President of the first AIESEC local chapter in Cambodia – AIESEC Phnom Penh.

This was my team – the first ever Local Committee Executive Board of AIESEC Cambodia.
This was my team – the first ever Local Committee Executive Board of AIESEC Cambodia.

March – August, 2009

Following a series of training and induction activities by the founding team from AIESEC UK, from March until August 2009, my team and I worked mainly to recruit and induct new members in our local committee, as well as helping to expand AIESEC into other universities including Limkokwing University of Creative Technology, Institute of Foreign Languages, University of Puthisastra, National University of Management, and Royal University of Laws and Economics.

August 2009
Because of a scholarship to study in Europe for one year, I made the decision to leave my responsibility in AIESEC behind. Studying abroad was then a dream that I could not throw away.

September 2010
I joined my first AIESEC conference in Siem Reap (it was then called, AIESEC Cambodia Summer Conference 2010), and I met so many new faces. Though feeling somehow disconnected from the organization and from the new people in the organization, I was really intrigued by the idea of being on the national board of AIESEC Cambodia, just as my friends – Chetra (my LCVP TM) and Tong (the first LCP of AIESEC IFL). I was inspired.

Summer Conference 2010
Summer Conference 2010

January 2011
Following the decision, I submitted my MCVP application and went, for the first time,  to facilitate an AIESEC conference (National Congress 2011). By the end of the conference, I got the news, being selected as an MC manager of TM, which was upgraded to be the MCVP TM & OGX.

Fellow Cambodian members who were also applying and got selected as MCVP of AIESEC Cambodia 2011-2012

March 2011
I made an investment and joined my first-ever AIESEC international conference – Asia Pacific Exchange and Leadership Development Seminar 2011 in Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. What a great and eye-opening experience.

Cambodian delegates on the conference’s Global Village, with a delegate from Canada and another from Brazil (who went on to be the President of AIESEC International 2014-15)

June 10, 2011

My term as an MCVP TM & OGX officially started, in a team of 6 people, from 4 different countries – Cambodia, the Philippines, Indonesia and New Zealand.

A photo taken on our first team trip to Bangkok, Thailand

August 2011
AIESEC International Congress 2011, Nairobi, Kenya: It was one of the biggest conferences I have ever attended, with more than 600 delegates from more than 100 countries, and also my very first time in a new continent, Africa. It was a surreal experience.

4 out of 5 delegates from AIESEC Cambodia

January 07, 2012

Following an extremely difficult decision, I finally had the gut to apply to the first Cambodia president of AIESEC Cambodia. I was officially elected on January 7, 2012, to lead AIESEC Cambodia Session 2012-2013.

February 2012
AIESEC International President Meeting (IPM) is probably the most prestigious annual conference of the organization, where only presidents and president elects are the delegates. It was my absolute honor to join, and IPM 2012 in Hungary was probably the best AIESEC conference I have ever attended. And for the first time, AIESEC Cambodia became the full member of AIESEC International.

It was a privilege to meet and get to know these amazing, big-hearted people!

July 01, 2012

My term as MCP of AIESEC Cambodia finally started. I had 7 amazing individuals to work alongside me.

Always proud to say, we were a team of 4 different nationalities – Cambodian, Ukrainian, Hong Kong Chinese, Malaysian/Bruneian/Singaporean!

August 2012
Following a lot of hard work and strong commitment to responsible leadership, AIESEC Cambodia was awarded the UBS Regional Excellence Award for Asia Pacific 2012, at the AIESEC International Congress 2012, Moscow, Russia. It was my absolute honor to accept this award on everyone’s behalf.


October 2012
I was invited by a good and kind-hearted MCP friend to chair a national conference of about 200 members in Taiwan. It was a great learning and I felt really touched and inspired.

What a wonderful group of people I worked with to deliver the conference!
What a wonderful group of people I worked with to deliver the conference!

February 2013

After such a long struggle, I finally found my successor – an amazing and brave young lady from AIESEC Indonesia. But unfortunately because of the visa issue, she didn’t manage to make it to IPM 2013 in Serbia.

Dancing to represent Cambodia with the support of my beloved friends from Asia Pacific!
Dancing to represent Cambodia with the support of my beloved friends from Asia Pacific!

April 2013

It was my first time, facilitating an AIESEC international conference (SEA Congress). It was another great experience, an amazing one to bring my AIESEC experience to a close.

With the faci team!
With the faci team!

June 30, 2013

My AIESEC journey came to an official end. What a wonderful experience! We all made it through a lot of ups and downs and it all ended with nostalgia and a certain sense of achievements.

May 2014
After more than half a year, I made the decision to quit my job and to go for an exchange (something I have always wanted to do) and I started applying. And just recently, I got the news about a job offer at the Electrolux office in Singapore. I’m finally matched and going on the program that I was working so hard to enable for other Cambodians. Hopefully, things will go well for my visa application and I can actually realize my exchange.electrolux-logo

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What to Expect When You Are Expecting….to go on an Erasmus Exchange

Erasmus Programmes by the European Commission allow international mobility of thousands and thousands of students and recent graduates every year. In 2009, I was fortunate enough to be one of the students from Cambodia to experience life, study, exchange and travelling in Italy and Europe. For those of you who are going to undertake your Erasmus journey, I wish you the time of life. 🙂

Cities & Places: Graz, Istanbul, Athens, Pisa, Ljubljana, Victoria, Rome, Rhine Falls, Speyer, Paris

And here you are, my personal list of what to expect when you are expecting to go on an Erasmus exchange, especially if you are from Cambodia or any developing country in Asia. Continue reading What to Expect When You Are Expecting….to go on an Erasmus Exchange

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Simple Ways to Help Destroy Forest in Cambodia

The other day I hired a big tuk-tuk like pick-up truck to carry certain logistics from an event that I organized, and via my random conversation with the driver, I found out some simple steps to help destroy our forest.

As a driver, he said although the journey to Preah Vihear ain’t no easy, it has never been a losing business; he always managed some good profit. On every journey he made, he always managed to bring back home a few pieces of valuable wood. By now he had got enough to build a nice wooden house.

I was like, “Wow!” So, what I did was interrogating him a bit about it, thinking I could write and share especially with any of you who might be interested in destroying our forest, our country and our mother earth. So there you go – a really easy-to-grasp instruction:

Step 1: Go to any under-developed province in Cambodia where there are still a lot to deforest, with a car, van or whatever, big enough to transport an expected amount of wood back to Phnom Penh, and in the man’s case, his usual province to go to is Preah Vihear.

Step 2: Hire a few men with the skills and facilities to cut trees (apparently there are plenty of such men in places like Preah Vihear).

Step 3: Explore the province to find an appropriate spot in the forest.

Step 4: Pick any tree you like.

Step 5: Cut and end their lives and simply put them in your car/van/truck back to Phnom Penh.

See? It’s as simple as that, just as simple and as convenient as finding a few pieces of firewood to cook. As shocked as you might be now, I asked him if he was not at all afraid of being jailed for this, as clearly deforesting is not legal. “Aren’t you afraid of being caught and punished by some authority?” I asked.

He said, “No.” He then talked about how such act is nothing unique, meaning everyone is doing it there. In a province like Preah Vihear, there have been a lot of tree-cutting activities, so his errands once in a while to do his part in destroying our forest is no shock to anyone there.

Why is it so? Why such “awesome” acts go unnoticed, “unrewarded”? He explained, there’s a guy behind all these green-demolishing operations, who has got a special licence, worth a few hundred million dollars a year, granted by someone to cut trees, which means he can destroy and sell as much wood as he f**king wishes to,  not giving a rat-ass shit about anything.

I was like, “Wow! How wonderful!”

Disclaimer: This is written and reported out of an conversation I had with a man who claimed to have done it only. I have nothing to verify the truth to all these. So, if you want to follow suit, please remember to bear your own risks.

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Cyber-bullying Surfacing onto Cambodia’s Media

Have you heard of the term “Cyber-bullying” before? The concept of it had never really mattered or surfaced in my head, I didn’t even know such word existed, until a group with which I’m affiliated was affected by something that was going to grow into some cyber-bullying.

Let’s not try to define the term put under the spotlight of this post in any specific word or phrase. Rather, let’s try to understand its meaning by looking at the context around the instance below, which you might have already heard of. This is an article on Postkhmer: Continue reading Cyber-bullying Surfacing onto Cambodia’s Media

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Extraordinary Leadership to Anticipate!

The time has come for the hero to rise. Since its independence from the colonization of Cambodia under the French, no national leaders have seemed to be internationally and historically recognized as the one with the outstanding world-class leadership – the leadership that is non-deluding, selfless, powerful, transformational, revolutionary, and any adjective that the ideal leadership for Cambodia encompasses.

Cambodia was growing well under the leadership of King Norodom Sihanouk during the 1950s but only to fall very miserably under one of the darkest regimes this country’s history has ever seen during the 1970s.

Then, a new leader arose, Hun Sen, with the help of the Vietnamese, managed to overthrow the very dark regime of the Khmer Rouge in the late 1970s and brought Cambodia up to light again. However, his leadership hasn’t been proven amazing enough, with him and his elite group having about 3 decades to lead the entire nation. With all the favorable conditions, more than 30 years after its “rebirth”, Cambodia remains one of the poorest countries in the world. That leadership, I would say, is an OK one, if a not bad one.

I do hope I live to see the rise of an extraordinary leadership, the leadership that would vow the world, and that would bring Cambodia on its road to enjoy the power, the prosperity, and the glory that it once had. I’m excited to see, whose name would immediately trigger in people’s heads when Cambodia is talked about, would be always respected, would always be glorified and thought of with gratitude and admiration even hundreds of years after his/her living.

I hope he/she was already born. I hope his/her life has been blessed with all the righteous surroundings where his/her talent are being optimized towards its fullest potential and where great love, commitment, bravery, vision, selflessness and willingness to make necessary sacrifices for this country has been been nurtured. I hope to see the rise of THE EXTRAORDINARY leadership that Cambodia and millions of its people have been dying for.

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An Espresso & a Croissant to Power Yourself through each Day

This is to all those that are not currently employed anywhere and no longer have a university library or a self-assessed centre to go, but still have a lot on my plate that demand a great level of productivity each day.

I just quit my job and have been “free” for about two month now, and one of the challenges I’ve been facing is how I can still ensure my productivity when I am no longer bound by office rules and responsibilities, how at least 8 hours of my day is well spent on something that can produce certain results. When you have not yet established yourself as a full-time entrepreneur with an office rented for yourself or a corner at your house designed to be most conducive for your work, finding a place only makes things more challenging. Of course, there are plenty of coffee shops around Phnom Penh, but when unemployed, spending a lot on those “luxury” coffees isn’t very ideal, and as bad, we can’t just sit there the whole day buying only a cup of tea.

Continue reading An Espresso & a Croissant to Power Yourself through each Day

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F.A.Q. about the U.A.E.

When words like Arab, Dubai, UAE, etc. get mentioned, what questions usually come to your mind? From my experience having been there twice, a few questions keep appearing, so I reckon this post will help people become more aware about this part of the world, especially among people from what I come from.

What’s the point of all wealth and all the expensive fashionable shopping, when most Arab ladies cover themselves almost completely in black?

arab clothing
In their culture, women’s privacy is highly respected, especially after they get married. Because of culture, religion and how the role of a woman and a wife is perceived, a lot of women choose the way to dress. Some completely cover themselves completely, even their face (covering their face with a thinner piece of black over their entire fact), some leave only their eyes uncovered, some leave their face cloth-free but put on certain type of jewelry over their nose, and some leave their faces uncovered.

In fact, they only cover themselves in such black clothing when in public. When in the comfort of their family and at home, they go in their normal clothing, with jewelry and whatever they want to put on themselves to make them feel beautiful. This black cloth is only used to cover themselves in public premises. Continue reading F.A.Q. about the U.A.E.

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Something Very Practical I Learnt from Obama’s Remarks at YSEALI Town Hall

I was among the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative 2014’s 103 delegates, as well as the 400 participants of the Town Hall Meeting with President Obama. The overall remarks from him were empowering and relevant to me on many different levels and like a fellow delegate from the Philippines put it, it was really interesting to see him wear multiple hats – hats of a father, of a husband, of a once-a-young-person, and of today’s leader. I am going to share what in particular I found relevant, which I, as well as you all, can digest for personal application.


Dream to make impact, rather than to make money or to earn a title, because dreams that involve impacts on others can really take off. Continue reading Something Very Practical I Learnt from Obama’s Remarks at YSEALI Town Hall

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