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International Partnerships
News announcement12 March 2024Phnom PenhDirectorate-General for International Partnerships3 min read

Global Gateway: EU and Cambodia enhance partnership to boost jobs and green transition

Today, European Commissioner for International Partnerships Jutta Urpilainen announced new initiatives to advance the EU-Cambodia partnership. The announcements include the Global Gateway flagship “Education for green and digital jobs”, two Team Europe Initiatives, on “Green Agribusiness and Decent Jobs” and “Green Factories and Decent Jobs. Commissioner Urpilainen also signed four new programmes on agriculture, sustainable energy, education and trade. These initiatives were inaugurated together with high-level representatives of Cambodia and EU Member States during the Commissioner’s visit to Cambodia.

Commissioner Urpilainen said: “As my first visit to South-East Asia, it is a great opportunity for the EU and Cambodia to take stock of our longstanding cooperation while we look together towards a shared future through the launch of new initiatives, supporting sustainable economic development and job creation, and to foster concrete cooperation in critical domains. The European Union is committed to its partnership with Cambodia, as Team Europe to promote the green and digital transitions and to accompany Cambodia through the upcoming graduation from Least Developed Country status. The Global Gateway investment strategy will be the EU’s tool available to Cambodia in this critical juncture.”

The Global Gateway Flagship “Education for green and digital jobs” boosts the needed investments for the Cambodian youth to prosper. The flagship will ensure training cohorts of middle- to high-level professional technicians with the skills needed by Cambodia industrial policy objectives. Investments will focus on resilient infrastructure, research and knowledge, people-to-people exchanges with Europe, rights-based policy reforms, private sector engagement. University students will receive scholarships for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) subjects in Cambodia, including energy, from government-led sustainable funding.

The two Team Europe Initiatives support sustainable, green agri-business, green factories and decent jobs in Cambodia. One focusing on “Green Agribusiness and Decent Jobs” will mobilise €1.1 billion, and the other on “Green Factories and Decent Jobs” will mobilise €400 million. Both Initiatives will promote sustainable value chains in selected productive sectors, energy efficiency and renewable energy.

The four new EU programmes in Cambodia focus on promoting sustainable value chains, technical education and research, energy efficiency and renewable energy. They aim to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, enhance energy security and integrate Cambodian products into regional and international markets. With an EU contribution of €79 million, the programmes will support the development in the key sectors:

  1. Agriculture: The EU CAPSAFE initiative focuses on deforestation-free production and processing of cashew nuts and pepper, promotes sustainable agriculture.
  2. Garment, Footwear and Travel Goods: The EU Partnership for Sustainable Energy Practices in Industry (GFT) targets the garment industry, promoting renewable energy and aligning with international sustainability standards.
  3. Education and Research: The Partnership with Cambodia in Education will channel resources into technical education and STEM with an emphasis on green energy and digital skills.
  4. Trade and Private sector: the Trade and Private Sector programme (EU GATE) addresses trade challenges, streamlining customs processes and enhancing Cambodia's competitiveness in the global market.

All the announced initiatives are implemented together with Cambodia in line with their national priorities and in a Team Europe approach, i.e., EU, its Member States, European Financial Institutions and the private sector.

During the visit, Commissioner Urpilainen also discussed the EU-Cambodia partnership with Prime Minister Hun Manet and visited the Bakheng Water Treatment Plant, a second Global Gateway flagship in Cambodia. This example of the EU’s investment in Cambodia’s infrastructure ensures access to safe and clean water for over 2 million residents in Phnom Penh Capital and Ta Khmau City. Additionally, Commissioner visited the Museum of Tuol Sleng and will attend a tree planting ceremony at Phnom Penh Thmey primary school. On Thursday, Commissioner will travel to Lao People’s Democratic Republic.


Global Gateway is the EU's positive offer to reduce the worldwide investment disparity and boost smart, clean and secure connections in digital, energy and transport sectors, and to strengthen health, education and research systems.

The Global Gateway strategy embodies a Team Europe approach that brings together the European Union, EU Member States, and European development finance institutions. Together, we aim to mobilise up to €300 billion in public and private investments from 2021 to 2027, creating essential links rather than dependencies, and closing the global investment gap.

EU-Cambodia partnership

EU-Cambodia country projects


Publication date
12 March 2024
Directorate-General for International Partnerships
Phnom Penh