Trust and Control – Consumer Field Trip to where the food is grown

Media interviewed Ms. Tiv Chhat a farmer from Thmor Reap village, Pong Ror Commune, Rolea Baear District.

Media interviewed Ms. Tiv Chhat a farmer from Thmor Reap village, Pong Ror Commune, Rolea Baear District.

22 March 2014

Kampong Chhnang – Forty-one costumers of Natural Agri-Products shops (NAP), a social-business branch of the Center for Study and Development in Agriculture (CEDAC) in Phnom Penh, joined a one-day field trip to Kampong Chhnang province to see where their food is sourced. The field trip, including local media, visited organic vegetable produces in Thnoung Kambot village; Svay Chhroum commune and Thmor Reap village; Dok Kroung village; and Pong Ror commune of Rolea Baear District.

The visit is part of CEDAC’s Participatory Guarantee System (PGS)​​ – a locally focused quality assurance system. The consumers certify producers based on active participation and foundation of trust, transparent relationships and dialogue as well as knowledge exchange.

Consumers learned the behind-the-scenes of organic farming and biological control approaches to agriculture. The Cooperation between CEDAC and the GIZ project ASEAN Sustainable Agrifood Systems (Biocontrol) supports farmers to strengthen their knowledge on irrigation techniques, organic fertilizer production, protection of useful insects (predators) and application of other useful Biocontrol Agents (BCA) like Trichoderma Harzianum.

The customers of the NAP shops in Phnom Penh enjoyed the trip out of the city and actively discussed organic agriculture, health and environmental issues with farmers and the advisors from CEDAC and GIZ.

Consumers bought fresh products from Ms. Chan Simoeun, farmer in Thnoung Kambot village Svay Chhrum Commune, Rolea Baear District

Consumers bought fresh products from Ms. Chan Simoeun, farmer in Thnoung Kambot village Svay Chhrum Commune, Rolea Baear District

The participants of this field visit are now 100% confident of product origin and quality of the organic vegetables available in eight NAP shops in Phnom Penh. They want to share their impressions with their friends and relatives as well.In addition to the consumer field trips, CEDAC and GIZ are introducing a new Documentation Handbook for farmers, which is based on IFOAM Standards – an internationally applicable organic standard that can be used directly for certification. The farmers have to document every input and activity for their production. The data is controlled and verified first by commune leader, then by the internal inspector, and finally by the ICS Supervisor in CEDAC Headquarters. Trust and Control are going hand in hand.

Visit NAP on facebook:


Claudius Bredehöft

National Project Coordinator Cambodia

ASEAN Sustainable Agrifood Systems (Biocontrol)

Mobil: +855 12 21 54 30



GIZ Supports South-East Asian Countries for Enhancing Public Accountability of their Audit Institutions


ASANSAI Symposium on Enhancing Public Accountability in ASEAN”

ASANSAI Symposium on Enhancing Public Accountability in ASEAN”

19 January 2014

Jakarta, Indonesia. 19th January 2014. Seven ASEAN member states (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam) reached an agreement to implement measures for improving transparency and efficiency of their Supreme Audit Institutions in a meeting supported by GIZ.

The ASEAN member states participating in the symposium ‘Enhancing Public Accountability in ASEAN to achieve Regional Competitiveness and Prosperity’, organized in Jakarta (Indonesia), have decided to take crucial steps to overcome barriers for public auditing by 2017. These measures include: 1) To amend existing laws and regulations or to develop new regulations to strengthen the institutional and organizational capacities and autonomy of Supreme Audit Institutions; 2) To engage more actively with auditees and stakeholders such as the Public Accounts Committees, civil society, media and the public; 3) To increase awareness on public accountability amongst decision makers, politicians, etc.; and 4) To strengthen networking and sharing of good practices amongst ASEAN’s Audit Authorities.


Mr Tan Sri Dato’ Setia Ambrin Buang, Auditor General of Malaysia and Chairman of ASEANSAI Knowledge Sharing Committee of ASEANSAI

Mr Tan Sri Dato’ Setia Ambrin Buang, Auditor General of Malaysia and Chairman of ASEANSAI Knowledge Sharing Committee of ASEANSAI

Tan Sri Dato’ Setia Ambrin Buang, Auditor General of Malaysia and Chairman of ASEAN Supreme Audit Institutions’s Knowledge Sharing Committee, presented a summary of results agreed by representatives from ASEAN member states during the meeting. The Malaysian Auditor General also highlighted a number of constraints for an effective public auditing system in the region: weak law enforcement; lack of coordination and cooperation between Supreme Audit Institutions and audited entities; limited parliamentary oversight; low transparency in public reporting; lack of mechanisms to ensure audited entities follow-up on Supreme Audit Institutions’ recommendations; and lackof qualified human resources, amongst others.Supreme Audit Institutions play a key role to promote good governance and monitor public finances. These institutions ensure that public finances are managed in compliance with state regulations in an efficient, accountable and transparent way. Supreme Audit Institutions also strengthen capacities of civil servants to ensure that their roles and responsibilities are clear as well as to facilitate their participation for monitoring governments’ public expenditures.


For more information, please visit the ASEAN Supreme Audit Institutions’ website:

Key Data on Poor Households from the Ministry of Planning available

1 edite

11 March 2014

A new data set on poor households from seven provinces and the rural areas of Phnom Penh is now accessible and can be used by government institutions, non-governmental organizations and specialized aid agencies in order to target services and development assistance to the people living in poverty more effectively.

With support from the Identification of Poor Households program -implemented by the Ministry of Planning of Cambodia and its provincial departments with technical support from GIZ- the Ministry has just made available more data of households identified as poor in Kampong Cham, Kampong Thom, Siem Reap, Beantey Meanchey, Kratie, Oddar Meanchey, Stung Treng and the rural areas of Phnom Penh.

This data includes lists of poor households with their poverty category; details of all members of poor households (name, sex, age/year of birth, relationship to head of household); photos of poor households; poverty rates at the levels of village, commune, district and province: household-based and person-based; and aggregated socioeconomic and other special characteristics of poor households.

The data is presented in form of reports (pdf and excel formats) and maps:5

Report 10: Summary statistics (per province)

Report 13: Poor household list

Report 8: Profile of all household members

Report 14: Poverty Rate Comparison Report (district, commune/Sangkat, and village levels)

Report 15: Names and photos of poor household members (to be provided as per requested by users with approval from the Identification of Poor Households program).

Report 16: Household data summary (to be provided as per requested by users with approval from the Identification of Poor Households program).


Access to some information is restricted due to its personal nature. In order to receive it, the user (a person on behalf of the institution or organization) will be required to register as a data user and to request permission from the Identification of Poor Households program (


GIZ provides advisory support to the Ministry of Planning and its provincial departments in all steps of the implementation of the Identification of Poor Households program and supports relevant capacity development measures ( The Identification of Poor Households program is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), DFAT, UNICEF and the Royal Government of Cambodia.


Towards Inclusive Health Services in Cambodia – A Promising Approach

03 February 2014

More than one billion people across the world live with some form of disability, a large major­ity of whom live in developing countries. Pov­erty and disability are often interrelated. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) represented a major step towards making disability a human rights issue, and became an important frame­work for disability-inclusive development coop­eration. The CRPD, ratified by Germany in 2009, encouraged and influenced development cooperation partners in their efforts to ensure greater inclusion of persons with disabilities in programmes and policies. Following its ratifica­tion, Germany developed a National Action Plan on the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities and the Federal Ministry for Economic Coop­eration and Development (BMZ) elaborated its own Action Plan for the Inclusion of Persons with Disabilities (2013), which aimed to ensure systematic mainstreaming of the inclusion of persons with disabilities in German develop­ment policy. It outlined several strategic objec­tives and measures to be incorporated into de­velopment cooperation. One measure is the in­clusion of persons with disabilities within the health sector in Cambodia, building on the ex­isting partnership with the Cambodian Govern­ment in this area.

Cambodia ratified the Convention in 2012, committing itself to promoting the equality of persons with disabilities in all spheres of soci­ety. In 2011, the Royal Government of Cambo­dia and the German Government agreed dur­ing its cooperation meetings to develop ideas about how to mainstream the inclusion of per­sons with disabilities in current and future co­operation activities to ensure that one of the most vulnerable groups of Cambodian society could increasingly participate in and benefit from poverty reduction programmes and devel­opment initiatives. Based on this decision, Ger­many provided additional resources for the pri­ority area Health (Social Health Protection Pro­gramme) of Cambodian-German bilateral de­velopment cooperation. They were allocated in June 2012 to the Technical Cooperation (TC) project implemented by the Deutsche Ge­sellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), operating on behalf of BMZ to enhance the inclusion of persons with or vulnerable to disabilities.

With this article, the authors aim to show how the political commitment to include per­sons with disabilities and other groups such as older persons has been translated into practice in the Cambodian health sector. Based on the

principles laid out in BMZ Action Plan for the In­clusion of Persons with Disabilities, the authors present key developments and lessons learned from the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the Social Health Protection Project, which is part of the Cambodian-German Social Health Protection Programme. The first section pro­vides a brief overview of disability prevalence and different forms of disability as well as main challenges persons with disabilities face in rela­tion to health care access in Cambodia. In the second section, the authors describe the pro­cess of mainstreaming the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the health sector, outlining key elements of this work and factors influenc­ing success.

Please find the full article here:

Copyright: “Disability and International Development” (Institute for Inclusive Development)


Strengthening social health protection schemes and improving client satisfaction with public health services

17 January 2014


With the aim of advancing social health protection in Cambodia, operators of social health protection schemes across Cambodia joined forces to establish an association that would allow for a collective voice and provide a platform for collaboration. The initiative would also enable access to quality technical support, attracting financial resources; and promote information sharing and policy development within the sector.

Therefore, a number of organisations joined hands and contributed to the establishment of a new capacity development institute for NGOs active in the social health protection sector e.g. as operators for the  Health Equity Funds (HEF), integrated social health protection schemes (extended HEFs through voluntary enrolment programmes), and Micro Health Insurance (MHI). This new institute, the Social Health Protection Association (SHPA), began its operations, with support of GIZ, in May 2012.

SHPA’s mission is to support and promote the quality, sustainability and coverage of voluntary enrolment programmes and other social health protection schemes in Cambodia.

Its main objectives are to support social health protection schemes:

  • To provide a collective voice and platform for collaboration;
  • To establish a high-quality resource centre for all social health protection schemes; and
  • To provide an information and communication platform for all stakeholders.

To fulfill its aims, SHPA developed a work-plan, based on key support needs identified by its members, with additional inputs from the Ministry of Health and other key partners. In line with the plan, SHPA organised various workshops and capacity building trainings.


Client Satisfaction and Quality improvement

The majority of the Cambodian population initiates medical treatment in the private sector. Approximately 30% initiates care in public health facilities. The main reason for this is the perceived low quality of care in the public sector.  Many Cambodians prefer private providers because they are seen as friendlier and more responsive to patients’ needs, even if the technical quality of services is inferior to that provided in the public sector.

Improving misperceptions of the quality of public health services, and thus overall client satisfaction, is essential to ensure optimal operations of a social health protection scheme. The Ministry of Health guidelines for SHP schemes require operators to address these issues through specific activities to monitor and respond to clients’ feedback. In response, a client Satisfaction Survey Tools (CSST) was developed by the Quality Assurance Office of the Ministry in 2009 with assistance from GIZ. The intent of the CSST is to provide a standardised survey instrument and data collection methodology for measuring clients’ perspectives on care provided by hospital and health centres.

Social health protection schemes have a strong incentive to improve clients’ perceptions of health services by contracted providers, as enrolment –and service utilization- correlates with the population’s satisfaction with these services. Measuring client satisfaction with feedback on the results to providers to inform quality improvement activities, together with effectively addressing complaints while allowing the communities to voice their opinions, are important tasks of SHP operators. Most SHP schemes conduct satisfaction surveys amongst their members and have mechanisms for dealing with complaints and raising issues with healthcare providers. However, these are not standardized across the schemes.

Workshop on Quality and Client Satisfaction for Integrated Social Health Protection Schemes

Figure 1 and 2: Participants discussed a wide-range of topics from improving client satisfaction to strengthening external feedback.

Figure 1 and 2: Participants discussed a wide-range of topics from improving client satisfaction to strengthening external feedback.

Following a situation analysis of existing tools and approaches SHPA’s member organisations requested the Association to support them by:

1) Improving the use of existing quality and client satisfaction tools and processes; and

2) Initiating a process of standardisation to assist operators and the Ministry of Health to monitor perceived quality and client satisfaction within and between schemes

In response to these requests, SHPA conducted a workshop on Quality and Client Satisfaction for Integrated Social Health Protection Schemes on 17-18 October 2013.

During the workshop the operators, SHPA, and representatives from the MoH, and GIZ focused on client satisfaction surveys and tools, complaints mechanisms, data collection, storage and analysis, internal review of data and feedback, and strengthening external feedback to clients, communities, providers and local authorities.


Key issues defined by the operators for further discussion and support included:

  • A clear desire by the MoH to standardize tools for measuring client satisfaction;
  • Development of a standard database for client satisfaction assessment results;
  • Development of standard complaints format and roll-out of an online complaints system together with training to enable staff to effectively handle complaints, to strengthen their interviewing/survey skills and to analyse results of the surveys; and
  • Development of standard operating procedures for all associated processes.

Following the results and recommendations from this workshop, SHPA will continue to advocate for the standardisation of tools and approaches, continue the collaboration with the MoH on the development of a data system, and organise a follow-up workshop in 2014 on interview skills and data entry and analysis for field-level staff.



Development Partnerships: Experience Exchange

Opening ceremony of the workshop, Development Partnerships in Agriculture: Experience Exchange, organized by the RED-Green Belt programme of GIZ in collaboration with  Provincial Department of Agriculture and the representative office of East West Seed International Ltd

Opening ceremony of the workshop, Development Partnerships in Agriculture: Experience Exchange, organized by the RED-Green Belt programme of GIZ in collaboration with Provincial Department of Agriculture and the representative office of East West Seed International Ltd


6 December 2013

SIEM REAP – On 6 December 2013, a workshop on development partnerships was held in Siem Reap. The event was facilitated by GIZ programme for Regional Economic Development (RED) – Green Belt and organised in collaboration with Provincial Department of Agriculture (PDA) and the representative office of East West Seed International Ltd. (EWS).

The workshop brought together over 40 representatives from the public and private sectors as well as development agencies operating in Cambodia. Participants presented and discussed on-going development partnerships, i.e. collaboration agreements between agricultural input companies, on the one hand, and government or development agencies, on the other.

The event built on the experience of RED and its partners in the implementation of development partnerships in Siem Reap province since 2009. The Provincial Department of Agriculture (PDA) Siem Reap, EWS and the NGO Agricultural Development Denmark Asia (ADDA), among others, presented achievements and lessons learned from partnership initiatives that matured in the framework of RED. The representatives of Provincial Departments of Agriculture from Kampong Cham, Kampong Chnang and Kanda shared their perspectives as well.

Participants expressed agreement on the effectiveness of development partnerships as a tool to engage the private sector in the role of a know-how provider in agriculture. Similarly, private sector representatives shared the view that development partnerships can fit in their long-term commercial strategies.

Discussion unfolded on the challenges faced by public and private sector stakeholders and on ways forward. All participants stressed the difficulties involved in the identification of the “right” partner and advocated for a “brokering function” as RED has played in Siem Reap. Secondly, trust, transparency and clear communication procedures were identified as cornerstones of a successful partnership. Finally, participants debated on the contributions and functions that each partner should bear and expect. Lack of clarity on such matter is, in everyone’s opinion, a reason for failure.

Group discussion on benefits and challenges of development partnerships. Participants discuss success factors and limitations of public-private collaboration agreements and their effectiveness as vehicles to deliver services to farmers and producers.

Group discussion on benefits and challenges of development partnerships. Participants discuss success factors and limitations of public-private collaboration agreements and their effectiveness as vehicles to deliver services to farmers and producers.

The need for a policy framework that enables and regulates development partnerships also led to discussion. On this matter, the representative of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF), Dr. Mak Soeun, emphasised that partnerships with the private sector are already endorsed by government policies, while guidelines for their design and implementation still need formulation.

In conclusion, partnerships with private sector were recognised to play a significant role to promote access to know-how and innovations in agriculture, and increasingly so, as the public sector progressively embraces regulation, facilitation and coordination functions. However, challenges still lay ahead and further experience exchange will be required to establish guidelines and models that will orient development partnerships in the future.

5th International Summer School in Phnom Penh – Crowned by success!

6 November 2013

The end of the two-day International Summer School in Phnom Penh welcomed many satisfied faces, and all voiced positive feedback.

The Summer School took place from 5-6 November 2013. It is organized every year by the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction, the Royal University of Agriculture – Faculty of Land Management and the Technical University Munich; supported by GIZ Land Rights Programme.

This year’s Summer School was chaired by H.E. Im Chhun Lim, Senior Minister of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction.  It focused on the topic, “Strategic Spatial Planning: Responding to Territorial Development Challenges in Rural Areas”. About 22 high quality speeches and presentations of national and international experts from Lao PDR, the Philippines, the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and Germany provided a strong foundation for further discussions with panelists and the audience.

The picture shows H.E. Im Chhun Lim, Senior Minister Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (in front). From left: Dr. Franz-Volker Müller, Program Manager GIZ Land Rights Program; H.E. Pen Sophal, Secretary of State; H.E. Lim Voan, Secretary of State; H.E. Ou Vuddy, Secretary of State; H.E. Sar Sovann, Secretary of State; H.E. Seak Vanna, Undersecretary of State.

The picture shows H.E. Im Chhun Lim, Senior Minister Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (in front). From left: Dr. Franz-Volker Müller, Program Manager GIZ Land Rights Program; H.E. Pen Sophal, Secretary of State; H.E. Lim Voan, Secretary of State; H.E. Ou Vuddy, Secretary of State; H.E. Sar Sovann, Secretary of State; H.E. Seak Vanna, Undersecretary of State.

Discussions touched upon some of the most important topics for developing and emerging countries: How to mitigate the rural-urban migration? How to avoid the rural exodus? How to strengthen rural areas in terms of social and physical needs of the population? How to create jobs in rural areas and transform dormant rural towns to lively rural centers?  And, what role does comprehensive spatial planning play to respond to these various challenges mentioned above?

In order to respond to these challenges, participatory planning activities are of utmost importance. However, coordination, cooperation and communication among all stakeholders are necessary preconditions. The role of all stakeholders must be clarified and they should actively take part and contribute to the common objective. In his summary, Prof. EoE Holger Magel remarked, “It’s all about People and Land!”

The Summer School was attended by more than 150 persons from national and sub- national government institutions, international experts, NGOs, students and representatives of the private sector.

The benefits of looking beyond borders

Marion Kütemeyer and Christian Weiser - assisted by an interpreter - discussing the role of city councils in local economic development with members of the Sangke District Council.

Marion Kütemeyer and Christian Weiser – assisted by an interpreter – discussing the role of city councils in local economic development with members of the Sangke District Council.

02 December 2013

It was Christian Weiser’s third time to travel to Cambodia, and this time Marion Kütemeyer accompanied him. In 2011, the EU SPACE programme of the National Committee for Democratic Development (NCDD) suggested, for the first time, inviting members of city councils from Germany to promote experience sharing, to improve mutual understanding of local self-governance, and to strengthen the roles and responsibilities of Cambodian councils..


They came to Cambodia at the request of the Secretariat of the NCDD, bringing along their experience as members of the council of the German city of Eppstein. Their mission: Eight dialogue forums with district, municipality and provincial councils from the provinces of Battambang and Kampong Chhnang as well as a national workshop attended by around 400 participants. This year’s topic: promotion of local and regional development.


The large number of questions and lively debates that arose during the dialogue forums provided evidence that this glimpse beyond Cambodia’s borders had been both interesting and helpful


The starting point, however could not have been more dissimilar: in Germany, there is a long tradition of local self-governance, and the councils of cities and districts elected by the people are largely responsible for the development of their localities. They are responsible for energy supply and trash collection, for urban planning, schools and the promotion of local development, just to list a few examples. In Cambodia, commune councils were elected for the first time in 2002 and district, municipality and provincial councils were established in 2009. The scope of their activities is limited, since most responsibilities are still under the purview of the central ministries.

Christian Weiser explaining the relationship of sub-national councils and administration in Germany at a meeting with the Battambang   Municipal Council.

Christian Weiser explaining the relationship of sub-national councils and administration in Germany at a meeting with the Battambang Municipal Council.


Nevertheless, the NCDD-S believes that the Cambodian councils can and should begin to develop an initiative, particularly in the area of local and regional economic development. During the national workshop the Regional Economic Development Program of GIZ (RED) showed with examples from Siem Reap, how such an initiative could work. Councils could, for example, create a profile of their district or municipality, identifying economic strengths and weaknesses. They could also invite representatives of the private sector to advise on potential improvements, and they could link experienced business people with younger less experienced ones in order to facilitate their entry into the business community.


In order to ensure that the sharing of experiences with the two members of the Eppstein city council and the RED presentation would not be one-off exercises, the NCDD-S recommended developing a handbook for the councils on the promotion of local economic development. The handbook should be created with support from EU-SPACE and the RED programme and disseminated to councils in the first half of 2014.


Apropos sharing of experiences: the Cambodian councillors were surprised that the two visitors from Eppstein city council belong to different political parties. Christian Weiser is a member of the ruling Christian Democratic Union (CDU), while Marion Kütemeyer is a member of the opposition Social Democratic Party (SPD). Even during the forums in Battambang and Kampong Chhnang provinces, they made no secret of their frequent differences of opinion. They were playful and quick-witted as they parried the arguments of their respective “opponents”, much to the amusement of their Cambodian audience. This exchange not only provided an important contribution to the promotion of local development, but also to improving the political culture.


The EU-SPACE programme receives funding from the European Union and the governments of Germany (through BMZ) and Sweden (through Sida). It is implemented by GIZ as a component of the German-assisted “Decentralisation and Administrative Reform Programme” (ARDP).

A step towards Universal Health Coverage in Kampong Thom

26 November 2013

The Cambodian Ministry of Health and its partners are taking on the challenge of securing universal access to quality health care. The act aims to do so without risking impoverishment and indebtedness, by    covering patients’ direct expenditure related to health through social health protection schemes.

Out-of pocket expenditure for health care an impoverishment risk

Out-of-pocket expenditure constitutes more than two thirds of overall health spending in Cambodia. The health sector’s high reliance on ‘fees for services’ coupled with lacking social health protection puts people at financial, social and economic risk. It can further deter them from seeking health care when in need, as expenses are unpredictable.

With lower risk of debt, more pregnant women will seek maternal healthcare.

With lower risk of debt, more pregnant women will seek maternal healthcare.

Providing access to Social Health Protection mechanisms for all

In January 2013, the ‘Integrated Social Health Protection Scheme’ was launched in Stoung Operational District in Kampong Thom Province. This innovative approach supported by GIZ’s Social Health Protection Project allows voluntary enrollment in a Social Health Protection Scheme by extending the services of Health Equity Funds. Families can protect their members by joining the scheme and paying an affordable contribution. Through this mechanism, health care users with greater health needs can access public health services whenever needed without risk of impoverishment, of falling into debt and poverty because of unaffordable or unpredictable health care bills.
Without discrimination, all pre-identified poor households as well as voluntary enrollees are granted access to the same package of health services. In the scheme’s first months, membership of the scheme has experienced a positive upside trend, increasing to 29% of the population in Kampong Thom.

 Families identified as 'poor' may now be better reimbursed for their health care costs.

Families identified as ‘poor’ may now be better reimbursed for their health care costs.

The Non-governmental Organisation Action for Health (AFH) operates the scheme. Its tasks as operator include, promotion of voluntary enrolment, awareness raising, collection of contributions, reimbursement the providers for medical service costs. But most importantly, AFH also represents the interests of all scheme-members, poor, which are exempted of contributions, or voluntary. By doing so, AFH plays an important role in securing scheme-members rights and promoting adequate health service provision for the entire population in Kampong Thom.

The schemes’ expansion demonstrates strengthened efforts to make quality health services affordable, accessible and more equitable for all Cambodians. The scheme extends health care to those previously untreated and reduces the risk of slipping into poverty and debt when falling ill and seeking care. The expansion constitutes another step towards Universal Health Coverage.

Transparency and human resource efficiency central to GIZ’s support to the Cambodian National Audit Authority

GIZ and the National Audit Authority holding an evaluation meeting in Preah Sihanouk province, June 2013.

GIZ and the National Audit Authority holding an evaluation meeting in Preah Sihanouk province, June 2013

18 October 2013

 Phnom Penh, Cambodia – Cambodia’s National Audit Authority recently agreed on a way forward to improve human resource management, as well as standards for greater transparency with the public.

In a discussion facilitated by GIZ in Preah Sihanouk province, Cambodia’s National Audit Authority learned how to overcome bottlenecks hindering the implementation of guidelines for public financial auditing. Discussions also committed to accomplish further organizational changes to improve employee capacity.

Previously, GIZ advised the National Audit Authority on developing and implementing two handbooks – the Human Resource Management Handbook and Training Programme Handbook, which are considered key for building organisational and human capacity, as well as strengthening the authority’s quality assurance system.. The National Audit Authority will report on the status of the implementation of the handbooks by the end of this year, so lessons learned can be incorporated into the future performance of the institution.

In the briefing remarks to the Cambodian Auditor General, Som Kimsuor, held in Preah Sihanouk province, Juergen Lehmberg, Project Manager of the GIZ National Audit Authority Project, said, “Improved human resources management and stronger capacities for public transparency of the National Audit Authority will definitely contribute to build the trust and confidence that all Cambodian citizens deserve.”

Since 2005, GIZ has provided strategic technical support to the National Audit Authority of Cambodia. This work also comprises facilitation of learning and knowledge exchange at regional and international levels, such as the Asian Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (ASOSAI) and the International Organization of Supreme Audit Institutions (INTOSAI).

For more information, please contact Mr. Juergen Lehmberg (Tel: +855 12 333 101;

Informing Governmental Consultations on Land Sector Support


October 2013

Mondulkiri/Kampong Cham, Cambodia – In preparation for the governmental consultations on October 17, the continued German support to the Land Administration, Management and Distribution Program (LAMDP) was the occasion for an informative joint field visit to Mondulkiri and Kampong Cham provinces. The international delegation comprised the Desk Officer for Cambodia of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Ms. Stefanie Ruff, alongside several participants from the German Embassy, the Embassy of Finland, European Union (EU), KfW Development Bank, GIZ Cambodia, FINNMAP, ILO and representatives of local NGOs. The field visit was organized by the Ministry for Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (MLMUPC), Provincial Authorities from Mondulkiri and Kampong Cham together with Provincial Land Department of Mondulkiri and Kampong Cham and the GIZ Land Rights Program.


While also introducing into the work of the provincial cadastral offices on systematic land registration, the focus of the first half of the field visit was the support to indigenous people’s (IP) communities land registration in Mondulkiri province. The delegation visited the IP communities in Sre Khtom and Oo’Rona and learned about their experiences and involvement with the process of land registration, which had led to the issuance of collective titles for these communities.

A visit to two indigenous Bou Sra communities highlighted as well the difficulties of IP land registration to the delegation. The IP of the villages in Lmes and Poulu articulated their concern with multiple conflicts pertaining to their land boundaries, while not having received a collective title yet. It became very clear that resolution of conflicts during IP communities land registration is a complicated and lengthy process that needs further support.

DSC_0629The second half of the 3-day field visit, focused on reviewing the situation of land recipients on social land concessions in Kampong Cham province. While still poor, the land recipients showed to the delegation members in which manifold ways they were able to improve their livelihoods. As a side event, a pre-cut of a short film about a photo-documentation by famous war photographer Tim Page was screened in the community hall. The film stars several of the villagers, which squeezed into the community hall, next to the delegation team, to watch themselves and their fellow villagers on the screen.

The topics and lessons learned from the field visit were picked-up again during the governmental consultations and contributed by informing on agreed proposals, e.g. on the further strengthening of the support to IP communities land registration and post-project support to the German-supported land recipients.

For more photos, please visit:

Organic Farmer Assembly Marks Progress, Plans for Future

Counsellor Opening Remarks

19-20 September 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia - As organic rice production continues to expand in Cambodia, the Cambodian Center for Study and Development in Agriculture(CEDAC) and GIZ are working to ensure that farmers are properly supported to reap the benefits of organic agriculture. To this end, the Second General Assembly of the National Organic Rice Producer Confederation in Cambodia was held on September 19-20, 2013 at CEDAC’s head office in Phnom Penh. Over 50 rice farming community representatives participated in the meeting. Mr. Keam Makarady, CEDAC Director of Health and Environment and Mr. Claudius Bredehoeft, National Project Coordinator for GIZ ASEAN Biocontrol (ABC) for Sustainable Agrifood Systems facilitated the meeting.

Claudius presentation

Dr. Ludgera Klemp, Counsellor and Head of Cooperation at the German Embassy delivered the Opening Remarks in Khmer. She spoke about the German government’s long support for CEDAC, saying “it’s a pleasure to look back on the established cooperation with CEDAC since 2003 and the progress made through technical support for organic agriculture and market development for farmers since then.”

The assembly’s primary objective was to generate the 2013-2014 organic rice production plan. But according to Mr. Bredehoeft: “This meeting is also about sharing knowledge about the situation in the fields, in the market, and this year’s rice production.” In addition to reviewing the numbers of organic farmers, respective yields and the Fair Trade premium available to certified groups, participants were encouraged to discuss their successes and challenges. “It is very important that we learn from each other,” Mr. Bredehoeft stressed.

Farmers rice seeds

Other presenters included CEDAC President, Dr. Yang Saing Koma and Mr. Sou Savorn, CEDAC Sahakreas Operations Manager. Dr. Koma gave an overview of the essential System of Rice Intensification practices as well as the Fair Trade and organic certification processes, explaining how the farmers can benefit from this linked system.

Author: Mr. Alexander Davis (CEDAC)


Inauguration of Cambodian-German Friendship Association

Inauguration of German-Cambodian Friendship Association
8 August 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia – With financial support from Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH, Cambodian-German Friendship Association (CGF), a newly registered association held its inauguration ceremony on August 8, 2013  at the German Cambodian Cultural Center, or Meta House. The event was presided over by H.E. Khieu Tharavith, Secretary of State, Ministry of Information and H.E. Wolfgang Moser, German Ambassador to Cambodia. A total of 57 participants that include the association’s Executive Committee, advisors, members and interested participants attended the event. The gathering celebrated the Association’s inauguration, to promote public relations with all partners and stakeholders, and to encourage membership enrollments.DSC_0011

“I strongly believe that with the participation of its Executive Committees, General Secretary and members, the Association will flourish,” said H.E. Wolfgang Moser, German Ambassador to Cambodia.

The seminar ended with a cocktail reception to foster informal networking.

Cambodia hosts Indonesian delegates to exchange on Regional Fit for School Programme

The delegates and school principal and hygiene teacher talking about school sanitation and hygiene
08 August 2013

Kompong Chhnang, Kompot, Kompong Thom, Phnom Penh and Takeo Provinces, Cambodia – Diseases related to lack of hygiene, such as diarrhea and respiratory infections, are still the leading cause of death for children living in Cambodia. By the time children enter school, more than half are diagnosed with intestinal worms and a vast majority has dental caries, virtually all untreated. Students suffering from pain and disease are frequently absent from school, sleep less, and demonstrate an overall lower academic performance, compared to healthy pupils: Health status and school performance are closely related.

GIZ’s Regional Fit for School Programme in Cambodia aims to prevent infectious diseases among public primary school students to improve school attendance through three simple and low-cost interventions: 1) daily hand washing with soap; 2) daily tooth brushing with fluoride toothpaste; and 3) bi-annual deworming.

The programme has been supporting the School Health Department of the Ministry of Education Youth and Sport (MoEYS) of Cambodia with the program implementation since December 2011. Regional programme partners include SEAMEO INNOTECH, a regional center of the South-East Asian Ministers of Education Organization. Since its inception in Cambodia, the programme has benefitted nearly 8,000 students in ten public primary schools in Phnom Penh and other four provinces: Kompot; Takeo; Kompong Thom; and Kompong Chhnang. This regional programme is also being implemented in three other countries: Lao PDR, Indonesia and the Philippines.Regional networking visit- group photo - Svay Kal primary school

Facilitating regional learning and knowledge exchange

A regional networking meeting was organized in Cambodia from 25-26 June 2013 to allow delegates from Indonesia’s Regional Fit for School Programme the opportunity to observe programme implementation in Cambodia, exchange programme information and experiences with implementation. Six representatives from Indonesia’s Department of Health, Department of Education, and Department of Community Welfare in Bandung and Indramayu, Indonesia represented the delegation. Dr. Ramon Bacani, Director of SEAMEO INNOTECH, and Regional Fit for School Coordination Team and Project Managers in Indonesia and Lao PDR, also joined the visit. The School Health Department of the MoEYS Cambodia hosted the event in coordination with GIZ’s Fit for School Programme’s country team.

Indonesian Delegates receive warm welcome

At MoEYS in Phnom Penh, H.E Nath Bunroeun, Secretary of State, expressed his warm welcome to the Indonesian delegates and noted that the Regional Fit for School Programme applies evidence-based and low-cost interventions to address school health issues in Cambodia. Interventions such as these make the programme suitable for scale-up, countrywide. H.E. congratulated the School Health Department and thanked GIZ and all implementing partners for their support and collaboration efforts to improve the well-being of Cambodia’s children.

During the two-day event, the delegates visited three programme model schools in Takeo and Kompong Thom Provinces to observe the students’ daily hand washing and tooth brushing activities. Additionally, the delegation held meetings with school principals, teachers, commune councils and School Support Committees to discuss success and challenges with implementing the Regional Fit for School Programme.

Indonesian delegation, ‘impressed’ with Cambodia’s progress

Mr. Rigil Munajat, Project Manager of the Fit for School Programme in Indonesia, noted that he was ‘impressed by Cambodia’s commitment to the programme and that model schools in Cambodia implement hand washing and toothbrush activities with their students every school day’, six days a week. The delegates were also impressed by the steps taken by the School Health Department to secure programme sustainability by including a budget for programme materials for the upcoming year submitted to the national government. This action will support the School Health Department with the development of a plan to cover the costs of programme materials from next-year onwards.


For more information on GIZ’s Regional Fit for School Programme contact:

Ayphalla Te
Country Project Manager
Mobile phone: +855 12 906 908

Diversity of Health Information Systems in Developing Countries

The need for harmonization in planning and implementation

31 July 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia Following on from the webinar “ICT to support Social Health Protection” organized by GIZ Bangladesh and the Joint Learning Network in October 2012, CIM expert Michael Stahl proposes in this article that harmonizing health information systems should be a priority for technical assistance for social health protection.

Many de­vel­op­ing coun­tries in Asia, such as Vietnam, Laos, Indonesia and the Philippines, have already introduced social health insurance schemes to different extents, but are now dealing with highly fragmented IT applications among health care implementers. The same issues are found in several African coun­tries.

Other de­vel­op­ing coun­tries have yet to implement health insurance programmes, or are in the final planning stages, and their governments would like to avoid making the same mistakes as neighboring coun­tries. Cambodia, Bangladesh and Nepal are good examples of countries, which are beginning technical implementation of social health insurance systems.

In addition, planning and experimentation of these systems are happening in isolation within each coun­try, when viable solutions may already have been developed in other coun­tries. Apart from many practical concerns in achieving health care goals in de­vel­op­ing coun­tries, one of the main issues is the use of information technology (IT) in health services, and the lack of harmonized approaches in planning, de­vel­op­ing and implementing IT solutions for social health protection implementation.

This paper focuses on the operational side of social health protection implementation in de­vel­op­ing coun­tries, explaining how harmonization of social health insurance schemes benefits all stakeholders, and describing how monitoring and evaluation activities can be unsuccessful or lead to wrong results. The relationship between improperly working operational aspects of data management, and the difficulties that arise from this situ­a­tion, are also examined. Lastly, the reasons for high fragmentation rates among social service implementers are discussed.

Please find the GIZ discussion paper here

CPS Partners Launch First Website on Gender-Based Violence under the Khmer Rouge Regime

Bildschirmfoto 2013-08-21 um 14.44.41
26. August 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia The mass crimes committed under the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia in the period of 1975 to 1979 are known to many. Less known is the fact that apart from torture, murder and forced labor, gender-based violence in particular against women was also committed. Even among the Cambodian population the myth of the puritan Khmer Rouge soldier who obeys a code of conduct prohibiting so-called “immoral offenses” against women is prevalent. Such a myth reinforces the taboo on rape and other crimes against women who are thus excluded from the transitional justice process.

In order to thwart this myth and to give victims a voice in the historic record, three GIZ CPS partners in Cambodia have created This website contains a unique collection of documents, publications, articles, background information and video/audio-material on this topic which mainly originates from the work of the CPS Partners: Victims Support Section (VSS) at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal, Cambodian Defenders Project (CDP) und Transcultural Psyschosocial Organisation (TPO). These three organisations have joined forces to advance the participation of women in the transitional justice process through outreach activities, legal and psychological support and attendance at the Khmer Rouge Tribunal.

Information on violence against women in the Khmer Rouge period is rare and scattered. By setting up this website VSS, CDP and TPO are accomplishing pioneer work in the field of transitional justice in Cambodia in the hope that in future these silenced crimes will be acknowledged and condemned to the same extent as other crimes against humanity.

APSARA Stone Conservation Training Center meets growing demands of conservators in Cambodia

Bitte nehmen2
29 March 2013

Siem Reap, Cambodia On 29 March 2013, APSARA’s Stone Conservation Unit held the official opening ceremony for the new Stone Conservation Training Center. The Center will provide a new space for knowledge exchange in the field of conservation and restoration. With the aim to support the increasing demands of qualified conservators in Cambodia, the space includes a classroom, office, a small laboratory and workshop, as well as a library and meeting room.

H.E. Ros Borath, Deputy Director of APSARA National Authority; German Ambassador, H.E. Dr. Wolfgang Moser; GIZ Deputy Country Director Dr. Petra Schill; Madame Mao Loa, Director of the APSARA department DCMA; GIZ Advisor JosephinRösler  and the Stone Conservation Unit, as well as a number of guests from APSARA and international conservation teams attended the ceremony.Bitte nehmen1

APSARA’s 2-year-stone conservation training was launched in March 2013. Three local stone conservation experts from the Stone Conservation Unit are teaching theory and practice. Other conservation and science professionals with expertise in archaeology, mineralogy, history and microbiology will provide specialized trainings. Until recently, it was not possible to study stone conservation in Cambodia. With this new training programme, APSARA is now able to train new conservators on international standards.

German Development Cooperation in partnership with UNICEF provide vital supplies to improve maternal and newborn health in Cambodia

Untitled Kopie
14 August 2013

Kampong Thom, Cambodia Mothers and their newborns in three provinces (Kampong Thom, Kampot and Kep) will benefit from equipment and supplies to improve their health, funded by the German Government as a result of a partnership agreement between the German international cooperation agency, GIZ, and the UN children’s agency, UNICEF.

With the German grant, UNICEF procured equipment valued at more than $ 500,000 including ultrasound scanners, foetal heart detectors, sterilizing apparatus, surgical delivery instruments and resuscitators, to enhance the delivery of quality essential and emergency obstetric and newborn care services to some 300,000 women of reproductive age attending government health centres and hospitals in the three provinces. The supplies also include newborn kits with baby care items to be given to mothers attending government health facilities, with a view to encouraging community demand and utilisation of health services.

While Cambodia has made good progress with reducing maternal and child mortality, three out of four newborn deaths occur in their first week of life, especially during the first day, largely due to complications at birth and lack of postpartum care.

At the handover ceremony for the medical equipment and supplies, the Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, H.E. Dr. Wolfgang Moser, congratulated the Royal Government of Cambodia for the progress so far achieved: “This success persuades the Federal Government of Germany to continue its support to the Ministry of Health in view of responding to the needs of the Cambodian population.”

In her remarks, UNICEF Representative in Cambodia, Rana Flowers said, “UNICEF is pleased to partner with GIZ, to contribute our experience and expertise in procurement, to provide critical, quality, value-for-money supplies from reliable manufacturers, to support the government to deliver and scale-up essential services for mothers and newborns.”Untitled1 Kopie

Receiving the equipment, the Secretary of State for Health, Ministry of Health, His Excellency Professor Eng Huot, said, “Limited resources – human and financial – continue to be a major constraint to scale-up essential and life-saving health interventions to reduce maternal mortality. We are therefore, most grateful that the German Government and UNICEF have responded together to work with us to address this issue.

The German Federal Ministry for Economic and Development (BMZ) is funding development cooperation programmes in 50 developing countries worldwide. The cooperation with the Royal Government of Cambodia was resumed in 1994 and is mainly implemented by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit, GIZ, and KfW Entwicklungsbank. Health and Rural Development are the two priority areas of German Development Cooperation in Cambodia, facilitated by a cross-cutting area Good Governance. Technical and financial assistance in the health sector is provided through the “Social Health Protection Programme”, with a focus on health care financing, health service delivery, and health system governance. The Rights-based Family Planning and Maternal Health (Muskoka) project is part of this programme.

Ministry of Planning conducts forum to promote IDPoor Database

6 June 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia On June 6, the Cambodia’s Ministry of Planning, with support from GIZ and the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), conducted a consultative forum on the use of the different information sources and data products offered by the Identification of Poor Households (IDPoor) Programme. Excellency Tuon Thavrak, Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Planning opened the forum, underlining the importance of the IDPoor data, which is used by a growing number of organizations and poverty-reduction programmes as a tool for efficient poverty targeting.

The forum aimed to collect feedback from a group of key stakeholders including Government agencies, bi- and multi-lateral donor organizations, as well as non-governmental organisations, on the usability of different existing formats (website, data DVD, IDPoor Atlas) of IDPoor and how they could be further improved.  Participants also had the chance to provide feedback on potential data products linked to an online database, which GIZ supports the Ministry of Planning develop. Last but not least, participants had the opportunity to inform the Ministry of Planning what additional types of data, reports and formats they would like to have and need for their work. Ideas included services to poor households, and support to plan their programmes, monitor progress or prepare reports.DSC00097

Most participants agreed that the IDPoor data is very useful for their work and appreciates that the Ministry of Planning provides access to this information. However, some organisations – specifically smaller organisations at subnational level – still face difficulties finding the most up-to-date information, as well as extracting and analyzing the data that they need for their work. Therefore, participants welcomed the idea of making more information available online in the future and the Ministry of Planning’s efforts to include new, more user-friendly features.

The feedback and recommendations received during the Consultative Forum complement the feedback received from a larger group of organizations from an online survey designed by GIZ and disseminated by Ministry of Planning in May. The feedback from the Forum and the online survey will be used to make IDPoor information and data formats easier to use and better fitted to the different users’ needs. This will help promote the utilisation of IDPoor data as the primary basis for identifying poor beneficiaries and targeting development programmes to the households and areas that are most in need of support.

The “Support to the Identification of Poor Household’s Programme” implemented by GIZ is funded by German Development Cooperation and Australian Aid.

For further information on the IDPoor Programme please visit:

Rising Demand Boosts Organic Rice Industry

10 July 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia Production of Cambodian organic rice is rising rapidly as international demand for the product increases, experts said at a forum for growers and other in­dustry members held Tuesday at the Phnom Penh headquarters of agricultural NGO Cedac.

“In the first six months of this year we’ve exported about 200 tons of organic rice, which is about double last year’s figure,” said Cedac president Yang Saing Koma, adding that farmers aren’t producing enough to meet de­mand. “We hope that by next year, we’ll be exporting 1,500 tons annually.”

Although there are about 100,000 farmers who produce organic rice in Cambodia, only about 200 meet international standards, Mr. Saing Koma said.

He said Cedac hopes the number of certified organic farmers will rise to 700 by next year, but certification is a strict, three-year-long process, and farmers who are certified are subject to annual inspections thereafter.


Claudius Bredehoeft, national project coordinator for the regional program ASEAN Biocontrol for sustainable Agrifood Systems of GIZ, the international development arm of the German government, said at the forum that Cambodian farmers are well-positioned to carve out a niche in the rice market. GIZ together with CEDAC is building up the organic rice value chain for the national and international market since 2003. The organic production is preserving the soil fertility on the one  hand and supports the farmer to save the costs for chemical inputs on the other. Through the organic and fair-trade certification and market driven approach the farmers are increasing their income as well.

“Since Thailand has introduced minimum rice prices, and Cambodia can export tax-free to the E.U., it has advantages Thailand and Vietnam do not,” he said. “With the fair trade and organic price premium, there are good market incentives to [continue to grow the rice industry].”

Heum Sothea, a farmer from Kompong Chhnang province and forum participant, said that growing organic rice had improved living conditions for her family.

“When I grew conventional rice, I spent a lot of money on fertilizer and chemicals, and cultivated only 1 to 2 tons per hectare. I sometimes had to sell pigs to pay my debts,” she said.

“But now that I grow organic, I harvest about 3 tons per hectare and sell at higher prices. I can use the profit to send my children to school and buy them plots of their own.”

By: Mech Dara and David Kaner

Copyright by The Cambodia Daily

Training promotes Regional Management for Regional Rural Development

4 to 7 June 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia Twenty-two 3rd year students from the Royal University of Agriculture took part in a lecture series on “Rural Development through Regional Management”. Under the GIZ Programme on “Regional Rural Development through Innovative Regional Management” in Southeast Asia (Cambodia and Lao PDR) the lecture series aims to strengthen capacity in rural development in Cambodia. The focus is put on an understanding of the importance of “regions” as subnational, decentralized units (e.g. districts) as entities that can better promote development based on the needs of people in their area.

The regional management approach promotes interaction and cooperation between stakeholders of the public and private sectors and civil society. Local and regional actors and institutions identify constraints and potentials for increased incomes and employment. They work out a concept for the development of their regions and plan and implement joint initiatives to promote the local economy.

GIZ sponsored the series with the objective that regional development will be integrated into the Royal University’s curriculum.

“Polishing a Diamond” – Enhancing Women’s Engagement in Local Governance in Cambodia

pic1 for ARDP-SPACE weblog contribution on CPWP study and film










June 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia More than thirty percent of Cambodia’s population is between 15-30 years old; half of this young generation consists of women. However, women – and young women in particular – are not yet well represented and actively engaged in political decision-making processes of the country. For example, young women are not represented in the National Assembly and the Senate at all. Eight-teen percent of the commune councillors are women, but women at the age of 25 to 35 hold only 281 out of 11,450 commune council seats – a proportion of 2.5 percent. Of the 1,633 commune council chief positions, only 8 are held by women of this age.

Against the background of this situation, the Committee to Promote Women’s Political Participation (CPWP) has developed a study in cooperation with the GIZ-implemented EU Programme for Strengthening Performance, Accountability and Civic Engagement (SPACE) of Democratic Councils in Cambodia.

Testimonials demonstrate concerns and hopes for political participation

This case study and the accompanying film, “Polishing a Diamond – Young Women’s Political Participation and Representation in Local Governance in Cambodia”, reflects the voices, experiences, and life stories of young women. The young women interviewed are not a representative sample, but they provide strong testimonials illustrating the concerns, issues, inspirations and hopes regarding political participation and representation.

To give a few examples:

“I moved to Phnom Penh and started working in a garment factory almost 11 years ago. I work 10 hours a day, and I earn US$140 a month. I dropped out of school at grade 9. I understand what politics are: I am aware of my power as a voter and my rights as a citizen. I listen to the radio, and I understand what the commune council is about. But, I am absent from my commune and far from my daughter. I need to work and help my family.”  (29 year-old factory worker)

“I do not remember anyone ever telling me that I could be a leader […] but I have [all those] voices in my head, talking about my role as a good daughter and wife.”  (30 year-old factory worker)

“We have better education compared with our mothers; we work outside the kitchen; we have access to information, the Internet, Facebook, mobile phones, and SMS. We have CYWEN (a membership-based network for young women [100 members]), and we have more decision-making power both in our own family and in our community compared with our mothers.“  (30 year-old CYWEN member)

“I will support and encourage my daughter to consider joining local politics. I am thinking that women are doing a better job than male councilors. After 10 years of having women as council members, I can see their values. They do not waste time and they are practical. Young women would be even better. I will vote for them. Women in the past could only take care of chickens and the kitchen, but now it is different. They can be leaders, and they are doing a good job.”  (57 year-old male commune member)

“[…] I am not sure how I can do it [get involved in politics]. Political parties are not providing us with clear information and simple instructions on what the channels are for young people to obtain more information about a party and its platform, policies, and the youth/women’s movement. How can I join them or approach/contact them? What is the requirement to stand as a candidate? I feel also, it would be so strange if you just go to their office and ask for information. I am personally in the dark and do not want to walk in the dark. What I mean is, politics is a dark tunnel for me, and I need some lights before I can join.”  (25 year-old university student)

“Cambodian families expect for their sons to attain public status or high positions, and not for their daughters to do this. I am reflecting on my own experience, which my mom often reminds me of, that I should be modest and not aim for a position that may place me at a higher status than my husband. To put it simply – she wants him to shine, not me. This is not an isolated experience, but a common one among those of us with successful professional careers. We talk about it, we laugh about it, and we are working on it to change our families’ perceptions […]”  (30 year-old CYWEN member)

“I send home US$70 per month […] My dad passed away in 1997 when I was 16, and since then I have been the breadwinner of the family. I can imagine myself as a commune councilor, but I stop thinking that thought immediately [...] We need to eat, pay for rent and medical bills, and […] I think then politics is not for the poor and young women like me who need to support their families. It is simple, we can’t afford it.”  (32 year-oldowner of a car repair shop)

“In 2002, who could have even imagined that in 2012, 18 percent of commune council members would be women? This will be the story for young women, too. Cambodia is changing. And change is happening (mostly) at the local level. Cambodia and people in the communes are ready to vote for a 25 year-old single woman. […] Political parties are smart, and that is why they are now recruiting young people in all the villages. Village youth leaders of different political parties are joining and attending their commune council meetings.”  (19 year-old CYWEN member)

“I am doing my best to recruit more young people for my party. We now have 12 members (youth, ages 18–25) for each village, and I must admit that they are mostly women. Young men refuse to be group leaders, but young women are interested. Women can bring votes for political parties, and both the CPP and the Sam Rainsy Party (SRP) are aware of this. Women can mobilize people in the village and get lots of support. They talk, and they go door to door to listen to villagers. They are so close to the community.”  (50 year-old female commune chief)

Bringing new perspectives into politicspic2 for ARDP-SPACE weblog contribution on CPWP study and film

Young women recognize the lack of their interests in politics. Their reasons have to do with politics perceived as irrelevant to their concerns, and their feelings of alienation from an arena dominated by an older generation. This older generation appears to many young women as unapproachable and hierarchical. However, young women also believe in the notion of balancing leadership by including more women and young people. They believe inherently that women will bring new perspectives to solving problems and are interested in what younger candidates might have to offer.

Locating entry points

Through the study and the film, CPWP looks into possibilities, opportunities and entry points for greater engagement in local politics and hopes that this work will serve as a starting point for further discussion and advocacy among relevant stakeholders.

About CPWP

CPWP is a non-profit, non-partisan network of local organizations committed to enhancing women’s political participation and representation in Cambodia, established in 2005. The goals of the CPWP are to promote and advocate for equal access, participation and representation of women and men in political decision-making. The findings of the case study were presented and the accompanying film launched in a Consultation Forum on Young Women’s Leadership in Local Governance with representatives of political parties, relevant ministries, elected commune councilors; youth Networks, women’s rights organizations, relevant local and international non-government organizations and development partners in early 2013.

If you would like to watch the whole documentary “Polishing a Diamond” please visit GIZ Cambodia’s YouTube-Channel!

Muskoka at Women Deliver 2013

Conferene Call

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Meghan Olson from the Muskoka Project took part in the Women Deliver conference in Kuala Lumpur from 28 to 30 May 2013. During the three day conference she attended lectures on: the social and economic benefits of investing in women’s reproductive health; comprehensive sexual education; closing the gap in MDG 5; gender and family planning; women’s health; challenges for women in leadership; global progress in family planning; gender based violence and sexual and reproductive health and rights; benefits/challenges of public private partnership; ending violence against women; contraception in the post 2015 agenda; adolescent girls in health and development; population, sustainability, and women’s rights; and male involvement in maternal and newborn health.

This conference provided an invaluable opportunity to learn from the experiences of other professionals and organizations in the field and share first experiences of the GIZ Muskoka project. Meetings took place between colleagues from GIZ HQ and MEDICONSULT (Muskoka Consultant Ms. Pinging Yeoh) to discuss and conclude on the baseline study on knowledge, attitude and clinical practice of midwifes. Dr. Alexandra Piprek from Malteser International also attended. Her participation has been supported by GIZ and the EU.


Please visit the conference site to find information on the program, media, partner events, exhibition and sponsorship opportunities, and more. You can watch the archived videos at

ID Poor, RED-Green Belt and ARDP, Winners of the Gender Competition 2013 of GIZ Cambodia

Gender focal person from ID Poor program receiving award
31 May 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia –  Three programs Support to the Identification of Poor Households (ID Poor); Regional Economic Development Programme-Green Belt; and Support to Administrative Reform and Decentralisation (ARDP), have won the first ‘Gender Equality Competition’ for GIZ Cambodia. Eight initiatives from seven programmes participated in this competition with the goal of encouraging managers and technical advisors to promote gender equality and mainstreaming within GIZ’s work.

During the award ceremony held in Phnom Penh on 30 May 2013, Mr. Adelbert Eberhardt, Country Director of GIZ Cambodia said, “Due to the high quality of several proposals we have decided to award three programs, which will all be the winners of the ‘Gender Competition’ of GIZ Cambodia. I hope that all GIZ staff in Cambodia will continue making gender equality a priority in our daily work.”

The initiative “promoting women’s participation in the identification of poor households” of GIZ’s ID Poor programme was selected because of its impact on reducing gender gaps when identifying poor households; its high client demand; and potentials for business acquisition. This initiative also targeted women from socially disadvantaged groups, such as rural-illiterate women and women who are head of households.

ARDP program receiving awardMeanwhile, the “RED-Green Belt gender initiative” from RED-Green Belt programme was awarded based on its achievements in promoting gender equality and the empowerment of women in district workshops, at quantitative and qualitative levels.

For example, participation of women in district awareness workshops increased from 20 percent in 2008 to 33 percent in 2012, while women’s participation in cross visits increased from 16 percent in 2008 to 38 percent in 2012. This initiative from RED-Green Belt programme also successfully engaged men for gender equality and is, in fact, a good example of cooperation with decentralized institutions.

Finally, the initiative, “Helping get their voice heard – Strengthening newly elected female councillors”, from the ARDP programme, was also awarded for targeting 44 women councilors in two provinces. In addition to contributing to the participation of women in critical areas, such as decision-making at the sub-national level, this initiative effectively supported women councilors to improve their skills and leadership. As a result, this initiative gained interest from different partners.

Together, four judge assessed the initiatives and made the final call for the awards: Mr. Adelbert Eberhardt; Ms. Barbara Haeming, Regional Gender Focal Person for Asia-Latin America Department from GIZ Headquarters; Ms. Cornelia Grade and Mr. Rodrigo Montero, country gender officers of GIZ Cambodia, An assessment grid was especially designed and used by the judges for this competition. All initiatives will be published in a special digital publication in the upcoming weeks.

Further information:

Mr. Rodrigo Montero Cano,
Gender and Communications Advisor,
GIZ project ‘Access to Justice for Women’
Phone: +855 129 237 71

Nationally implemented surgical safety checklists in Cambodia saves lives

Diss WS 2 Kopie
May 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia – Surgery is an essential part of health care. It can cure illness, reduce morbidity and save lives. Surgery also frequency leads to complications that include excess bleeding, wound infection, anesthesia problems and even death. Surgical complications are caused by many factors depending on the condition of the patient ranging from old age to health status. However for complications that are related to quality of health care, it is estimated that at least half could be avoided by routinely checking common safety issues and improving team communication.

General data for Cambodia is not available, but international studies show that complications due to surgery occur in up to 10% of cases. In high-income countries, death related to surgical complications can occur in 0.9%, whereas in low- and middle-income countries the rates soar to 11.7 % of surgery resulting in complications and 2.1% in death.

Simple ‘checklist’ may save lives – local adaptation recommended

To increase the safety of surgery, the World Health Organization (WHO) developed “Surgical Safety Checklist” in 2008. The checklist targets 10 essential objectives for safe surgery, such as surgery location, provision of safe anesthesia, the management of airway problems and hemorrhage.

The checklist is grouped into three sections, requiring the verbal check and exchange of information immediately before the induction of anesthesia, immediately before the skin incision and right after skin closure. WHO encourages local adaptation of the checklist if appropriate. It is recommended for the checklist to be read aloud and verbally confirmed within the operating team. This potential life saving process clocks-in at less than two minutes.

Effectiveness proven

The checklist has been evaluated in 8 different countries and settings and has proven its effectiveness. The use of the checklist reduced the rate of postoperative complications by more than one-third. WHO estimates that with the general use of the checklist up to half of related death case could be avoided. It is estimated that 234 million people are operated each year and more than one million of these individuals die from complications fatalities. Using the surgical checklist could result in more than 500,000 lives saved on an annually basis.

Improving quality of health care a top priority

The improvement of the quality of health care is one of the top priorities of the Ministry of Health (MoH) and is supported by  the Social Health Protection Project of GIZ. Therefore the Quality Assurance Office of the MoH together with WHO Office in Cambodia identified the checklist as a ‘promising tool’ to increase the quality of surgical care.

Surgery in Cambodia, which is provided in public CPA 2, 3 and National Referral Hospitals, is on the rise. The changes in morbidity towards non-communicable diseases, such as cancer and traffic accidents are two of the reasons why this trend will probably persist.

Together with WHO, the Quality Assurance Office of the MoH developed a project plan to test the feasibility and the effects of the checklist. Financial support was received by funding from the Australian Agency for International Development, AusAID. The project included establishing an expert advisory board, a two-phased pilot, and a staff evaluation survey in participating hospitals.

Members of the advisory board included experienced surgeons as well as anesthesiologists and scientific associations, such as the Cambodian Surgical Society, donors and pilot hospitals. Pilot hospitals included the National Pediatric Hospital in Phnom Penh and the Referral Hospital in Svay Rieng.

Diss. WS 1 Kopie

Project pilot sites show promising results

The pilot, that took place from October 2012 to January 2013, showed promising results. As surgical safety improved, surgical complications (especially wound infections) decreased. Additionally, communication among surgical staff improved and awareness for quality improvement raised.

Survey results completed by surgeons, anesthesiologist and nurses showed a very positive attitude. For example, all participants affirmed that they would like the checklist to be used in case they had to undergo surgery themselves.

Checklist adapted nationwide

Due to these convincing results, MoH quickly officially approved the checklist. The Cambodian “Safe Surgery List” is now to be used nationwide in all public hospitals where major surgery is performed. Two dissemination workshops in February 2013 marked the official nationwide roll-out. The 170 participating surgeons, anesthesiologists and nurses of the according hospitals learned about the checklist, its use and expected effects. To enable them to train the staff in their institutions, they were provided with materials for training and dissemination.

Members of the advisory board took a very active role in this process. For example, their experience and expertise was applied to adapt the original WHO checklist to survey results and the local context and language. The board also provided the workshop audience with hands-on peer experience when presenting their results and answered critical questions related to content and handling of the checklist.

The checklist will be included in the up-dated CPA Guidelines, which define the role, function and service of public hospitals. An additional measure to ensure its national routine use will be the assessment of the checklists’ use during hospital assessment surveys.  The monitoring and evaluation of the routine use this year will be supported by GIZ. These steps exemplify successful project cooperation.

The pilot was conducted by the QAO with technical support from a WHO officer and the integrated CIM-expert, funded by AusAID. Monitoring of its routine use in 2013 will be supported by GIZ.

Cambodia is now the 26th country worldwide and the 6th country in the WHO pacific region, which has implemented the checklist nationwide.

For more information on the Surgical Safety Checklist contact, Dr. Dominik Dietz, MPH, Quality Management Advisor, MoH, Hospital Service Department/ Quality Assurance Office (GIZ Social Health Protection Project)

Please find the Cambodian surgical safety checklist here:

Handicraft Association Supports Business Development of Local Producers

May 2013

Siem Reap, Cambodia – GIZ’s Regional Economic Development (RED) Green Belt Programme supports private and public sector partners in Siem Reap to strengthen the handicraft sector and improve the competitiveness of handicraft producers, particularly in rural areas.

In Siem Reap, handicraft production significantly contributes to the economic development of rural areas due to a winning combination of tourist volume and natural fiber processing industries. Today, handicraft production is one of the most important non-agricultural income opportunities in rural areas, particularly for low income and landless households.

However, most local producers face serious difficulties making full-use of their product’s potentials. Often, they struggle to enter national and international markets. The existence of basic business development services, an important precondition for improving the competitiveness of handicraft producers, is currently underdeveloped.

Angkor Handicraft Association provides essential institutional framework for handicraft entrepreneurs

Untitled2 KopieIn 2011, GIZ-RED Programme, in cooperation with the Siem Reap Provincial Department of Commerce, supported handicraft enterprises establish the Angkor Handicraft Association (AHA). Today, the non-profit business association represents the Siem Reap handicraft sector in private-public forums, such as Small and Medium Enterprise Private Sector Working Group meetings in Phnom Penh, that aim to improve the business climate in the handicraft sector.

AHA also offers important business development services to its members and implements various initiatives that strengthen the competitiveness of local handicraft producers. Meanwhile, AHA has grown from 15 founding members to its present 42 members.

GIZ-RED, and its programme partners, provide advice to AHA during the planning and implementation of AHA initiatives and assist with management and steering capacities of the association through trainings and seminars.

“Seal of Authenticity” promotes locally produced handicrafts 

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Each year tourists visiting the Angkor Wat temples in Siem Reap spend around USD100 million on souvenirs. Most tourists prefer locally produced handicraft products. Often, tourists are unable to distinguish local souvenir products from imported items. In order to make better use of the long-standing and untapped high demand for locally produced souvenir products AHA has introduced the “Seal of Authenticity.

The Seal guarantees that artisans from Siem Reap Province made the product. At present, 32 handicraft companies are using the Seal of Authenticity.

Design Competition” fosters the development of authentic souvenirs in Siem Reap

In 2012, AHA and its supporting partners, held the “1st Siem Reap Souvenir Design Competition”. The objective of the design competition is to facilitate links between university-level Cambodian design students and the handicraft sector. These links support the strengthening of product and design development. More than 100 participants developed souvenir designs in 5 different categories.

As 2012’s competition was a success, AHA is currently preparing for this year’s.

Providing market access for local handicraft producers – The Siem Reap Handicraft Trade Center and the AHA Souvenir Market

Untitled4The recently opened Siem Reap Handicraft Trade Centre displays locally produced handicraft products from all handicraft sub-sectors in the area. The handicraft trade centre facilitates commercial connections between national and international traders and Siem Reap handicraft producers.

In addition to supporting the Siem Reap Handicraft Trade Centre, Angkor Handicraft Association (AHA) also provides trade related advice and services to Siem Reap handicraft enterprises and its national and international customers.

In 2012, AHA and its members jointly established the AHA Souvenir Market - the first and only Souvenir Market in Cambodia that displays only locally produced handicraft products. The market provides an additional trade platform for local handicraft producers, particularly for producers from rural areas who have limited access to customers.

Dealing with the past

15 May 2013

Today’s young Cambodians did not experience the Khmer Rouge’s reign of terror. Nonetheless, their generation is affected by the traumas of the past, which deeply mark Cambodian society.

Sun Py was nine years old when he was separated from his parents and three siblings in 1976. He survived the horrors of the Khmer Rouge regime but suffered considerable distress as a result of losing his family and not knowing what had become of them. Thirty-four years later, Sun Py found those he had lost with the help of a TV programme. Cameras recorded the reunion, capturing the moment when he embraced his mother for the first time and broke down in tears.

A year later Sun Py was interviewed by Ly You Y and Lay Rattana for their documentary film “Finding Lost Ones”. He told them: “I feel very happy, both physically and mentally.” He added: “I know my identity.” His mother, who had thought her son dead, described her relief: “I feel like I have recovered from all my illness.”

One of the two film-makers who shot the documentary about Sun Py and others, Ly You Y, is 22 years old. That is the average age of the Cambodian population. Like more than 60% of her compatriots, she did not directly experience the Pol Pot dictatorship from 1975 to 1979. Even so, she was affected by it in a deeply personal way: “My mother lost three of her six brothers and sisters during that time,” the young woman explains. Ly You Y made her film in 2011 as part of her studies in the Department of Media and Communication (DMC) at the Royal University of Phnom Penh. The project was supported by the Civil Peace Service (CPS) of GIZ.

However, the film-maker had less luck than her main character. Her relatives are still missing: “We did everything we could to find them. But now we have no hope anymore.” They remain among the hundreds of thousands of people who disappeared without trace. For the TV programme “It’s not a Dream”, which reunited Sun Py with his family, Cambodian broadcaster Bayon reported receiving at least 20 missing persons enquiries a day.

Years of terror

Most people search in vain. An estimated 1.7 million fell victim to the Khmer Rouge. That was approximately a fifth of the population at the time. Men, women and children lost their lives in the “Killing Fields” or on death marches…

Please find the whole post here>>>

GIZ Supports Cambodia to Contribute to Historic Global Agreement to Stop Violence against Women

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Minister of Women’s Affairs Dr. Ing Kantha Phavi and representatives from GIZ, line ministries, women’s organizations and other development partners participated on 21st May in a follow-up event on the remarkable agreement reached at the 57th Commission on the Status of Women to end violence against women and girls.

The historic 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women produced an agreement by 123 countries that paves the way for action to prevent and end violence against women and girls worldwide. Representatives from the Royal Government of Cambodia participated in this international conference held in New York in March 2013. GIZ project ‘Access to Justice for Women’ supported Cambodian Delegation by setting up an internal process within the Ministry of Women’s Affairs to prepare inputs in a participatory manner and review progresses and challenges on the fight on violence against women and girls to be reported in the international forum.

As part of the follow-up event at Cambodian level organized on 21st May in Phnom Penh, Minister Phavi said “Cambodia will move forward with the Second National Action Plan to Prevent Violence against Women 2013-2017 in line with international standards and commitments such as the 57th Commission on the Status of Women. We will make sure that perpetrators are held accountable and that women survivors receive the necessary support. Further improvements will have to be made in critical areas, such as prevention and response to sexual violence, including rape and sexual harassment.”

In fact, the unique process to develop the Second National Action Plan to Prevent Violence against Women 2013-2017 was shown as one of the best Cambodian practices during the international conference held in New York. The referred process has involved women survivors of violence, civil society organizations –including women’s organizations-, line ministries and development partners who have participated in more than 10 consultations at national and sub-national level in the last year. This policy plan builds on the results and lessons learnt from the First Action Plan 2009-2012 and will come into force after final endorsement by the Council of Ministers of the Royal Government of Cambodia in the upcoming months.

Dr. Andreas Selmeci, Team Leader of the GIZ project ‘Access to Justice for Women’, said during event “Interventions under the umbrella of the Second National Action Plan are expected to be more human-rights and gender responsive, more socially inclusive and more empowering. In addition, actions would target women who are at higher risk of sexist violence, such as garment factory workers, sex workers, women with disabilities, women living with HIV/AIDs, women from indigenous, ethnic or religious minorities, as well as lesbian and bisexual women and transgender people.”

Mr. Paul Keogh, Counsellor Development Cooperation of the Australian Agency for International Development (AusAID), said during event “Violence against women is a significant human rights violation. It devastates lives, fractures communities and undermines good development. The Second NAPVAW is an example of the commitment and cooperation of the Royal Government of Cambodia with their partners to address this issue. Australia is very pleased to be working with Royal Government to help develop and implement this important initiative.”

Agreed conclusions of the 57th Commission on the Status of Women urge all countries to strengthen legal and policy frameworks, with important provisions on ending impunity of perpetrators, ensuring accountability and access to justice for women, as well as putting in place coordinated multisectoral services that respect confidentiality and the safety of women who suffer from gender-based violence.

“In March this year, the United Nations convened the 57th Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW),” noted United Nations Resident Coordinator Claire Van der Vaeren. “It offers global standards on actions to end violence against women, and Cambodia’s efforts are already in line with many of the Commission’s recommendations. The United Nations continues to support the Royal Government and development partners to prevent violence against women and girls, and to address the root causes– gender inequality and discrimination.”

In addition, H.E. Chou Bun Eng, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Interior; Ms. Pok Panha Vichet, Executive Director of Cambodia Women’s Crisis Center; and Ms. Sok Panha, Executive Director of Banteay Srei, participated as well in the event to highlight national responses and challenges to eradicate violence against women and girls in Cambodia

For more information on GIZ project ‘Access to Justice for Women’ please contact:

Mr. Rodrigo Montero Cano
Gender and Communications Advisor
Tel.: +855 129 237 71

Development of Cambodia’s National Energy Efficiency Policy, Strategy and Action Plan

EU GruppenfotoThe EU Energy Initiative Partnership Dialogue Facility (EUEI PDF) is currently assisting the Ministry of Industry, Mines and Energy (MIME) in the development of a National Energy Efficiency Policy, Strategy and Action Plan that seeks to contribute in a cost-efficient manner to increase Cambodia’s energy security.

The EUEI PDF is a multi-donor-funded instrument of currently six EU member states and the European Commission, which operates globally.  The Project Management Unit of the EUEI PDF is hosted by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ).

As part of the development of Cambodia’s National Energy Efficiency Policy, Strategy and Action Plan, the EUEI PDF, with support by GIZ Cambodia, organized the final workshop of its activity with MIME on 29-April 2013, which was launched by His Excellency Suy Sem, Minister of Industry, Mines and Energy.

Link :

National Audit Authority Celebrates Equal Rights and Equal Opportunities for Women

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7 March 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia In commemoration of the 102nd Anniversary of International Women’s Day, the National Audit Authority (NAA) organized an event around this year’s theme: “Equal Rights, Equal Opportunity to Accelerate Progress”. Her Excellency Som Kimsuor, Auditor General of the NAA, presided over the event while 59 women from the NAA and the GIZ project to support the NAA joined the event as well.



Advancing technical knowledge to advance women’s status

Ms. Kuoy Lang, representative of the women of NAA, conveyed the message from Her Majesty Queen Mother Norodom Monineath Sihanouk. This year, messages focused on improving technical knowledge of women to strengthen their rights and improve career opportunities. Ms. Kuoy Lang also summarized the activities and outcomes of women’s work inside the NAA.

In addition to Ms. Kuoy Lang’s speech, Auditor General Som Kimsuor stressed that achieving “Equal Rights, Equal Opportunities to Accelerate Progress” requires promoting rights and opportunities for allowing the participation of women in the country’s development. This also requires encouraging Cambodian women and men to take action and stand as champions of gender equality.

Government Commitments to Reduce Gender DisparitiesWomen's day_02klein

The 1993 Constitution states “Men and women have equal rights before the law and enjoy equal participation in political, economic, social and cultural life. This includes equality in marriage and family; employment; and equal pay. It also includes measures to prevent and eliminate of all forms of discrimination and exploitation of women.”

Additionally, the National Strategic Development Plan and the Cambodia Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) highlight the Government’s commitment to reduce gender disparities in all development sectors; the need to put in place effective measures to remove barriers that women face; and to increase opportunities for women to fully participate and benefit from development.

Precisely, GIZ also applies a gender mainstreaming strategy to help anchor the gender aspects of its work. This involves managing the development, and evaluation of decision-making processes and measures from a gender perspective while also measuring the impact of interventions on the lives of both women and men.

Poor households identified in 7 provinces and rural areas of Phnom Penh, covering a total of 4,821 rural villages

3 May 2013

Cambodia - With support from GIZ, the Ministry of Planning and Provincial Departments of Planning have successfully completed “Round 6” of identifying poor households (“IDPoor”).

Village meetings and household interviews took place in all rural areas of seven provinces including Kampong Cham, Kampong Thom, Siem Reap, Beantey Meanchey, Kratie, Oddar Meanchey, Stung Treng and the capital, Phnom Penh. Up-to-date lists of poor households are now available for these areas, covering a total of 4,821 rural villages. With support from GIZ, the data will now be entered into the IDPoor database.

Equity Cards provide access to social services

Households identified as poor during the IDPoor process will receive so-called “Equity Cards” from the Ministry of Planning. The cards will enable them to qualify for and access a range of services and receive support from various poverty reduction programmes.

GIZ advises the Ministry of Planning and Provincial Departments of Planning in all steps of the IDPoor implementation process and supports relevant capacity development measures; this support is funded by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and Australian Aid.

For further information on the IDPoor Programme please visit:

On-the-job banking audit training: building confidence and technical capacity, hand-in-hand

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5 April 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia – On-the-job training is known to be an effective approach to putting technical skills into practice. By adopting this approach, GIZ’s National Audit Authority Programme helps Cambodia’s National Audit Authority (NAA) strengthen its capacity and team skills of auditors in charge of auditing at the Central Bank. Auditors at the Central Bank are mainly responsible for monetary policy and bank supervision of the Kingdom of Cambodia.


Development of Audit Guidelines listed as, ‘an urgent task’

Momentarily, the NAA is working to urgently finalize the (draft) Audit Guideline for the Central Bank. At the same time, staff training is underway with the aim to raise the quality of independent audits.

In 2008, NAA initiated an audit at the Central Bank and Parliament discussed its audit findings in 2012. In coming years, NAA Central Bank audits are planned to continue. Guidelines would aid this process, and provide a foundation for auditors to work from.

Audit Working Group overcomes challenges through training

Her Excellency, Auditor General Som Kimsuor, recently established a new Working Group to conduct audits at the Central Bank to aid the process. However, as audit topics have evolved from previous ones, the newly established Working Group is anticipated to face some difficulties.

To overcome their challenges, GIZ’s NAA Programme engaged a German audit specialist, Dr. Uwe Roger Schreiner, to facilitate hands-on training for the audit team responsible for the Central Bank audit. The objectives of the training that took place on 11-15 March 2013, included:

1)     Contextualizing the (draft) Audit Guideline to better suit Cambodian needs;

2)     Training the Working Group on the audit process – from planning to reporting – at the Central Bank by providing some best practice examples from the German Bundesbank; and

3)     Drafting the Audit Programme for the audit at the Central Bank.

The result of this work will be discussed with the Working Group and included in the Audit Guideline.

Trainings deliver solutions. moving the process forwardBanking audit training_2_klein2

As a result from the training, the Audit Guideline on the Central Bank will be restructured to comply with the general standards of the INTOSAI. The Working Group will continue to refine the Guideline’s content and will submit the final product to the Auditor General for approval. Training participants have not only developed their professional capacity and technical knowledge through these trainings, they also feel more confident to conduct the audit at the Central Bank.

It is a challenging task for NAA to perform an audit on a specialized institution, such as the Central Bank.  The Guideline was developed to aid this process. As the Guideline is a ‘living document’, its drafting is just the beginning a longer process ahead. To ensure its effectiveness, the Guideline must be tested and regularly updated to reflect changes in the Central Bank, and assist with the development of new audit methodology.

For more information on GIZ Support to the National Audit Authority Project, please contact:

Mr. Juergen Lehmberg
Team Leader
Tel: (855) 12 333 101


Every Person Counts – See ability, not disability

“Epic Arts opens our eyes to our common humanity so that all of us can flourish.”
Archbishop Desmond Tutu

April 2013

Kampot Province, Cambodia – Artistic expression is a common human characteristic, unlocking creative potential and defying borders. Epic Arts, a disability-arts NGO (, works towards equality by reaching out to people with physical and learning disabilities and provides deaf education and education for children with learning disabilities as well as vocational training in Kampot Province, Cambodia. Through art, Epic Arts seeks to live out the values of inclusion, understanding, justice and equality.

The organization celebrates the richness of diversity through dance and theatre performances and creative workshops. Additionally, it runs a café, selling handicrafts produced by people with impairments. The café not only offers employment to the disabled, but also acts as a social hub for people with disabilities.

Documentary showcases benefits of disability inclusionsmall4

Students of the Women’s Media Centre produced a short documentary on the work of Epic Arts with support from the DW Academy ( and the GIZ Social Health Protection Project.

On behalf of the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development, GIZ supports the Royal Government of Cambodia in disability inclusion in the development process. With the government’s ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, disability inclusion assumes a more prominent role in development cooperation programmes, to ensure that the most vulnerable groups in society benefit from poverty reduction and development. To promote the inclusion of people with or vulnerable to disabilities the GIZ’s Social Health Protection Project deploys a mainstreaming approach in all its areas of intervention and supports selected, targeted activities in close collaboration with Handicap International Cambodia and other organisations representing people with disabilities, such as Epic Arts.

Advocating for inclusive health services

The GIZ Social Health Protection Project will further cooperate with Epic Arts in awareness rising activities and advocating for inclusive health services in the province of Kampot, one of the project’s target-areas.  GIZ Social Health Protection Project seeks to involve people with disabilities and civil society as much as possible in local processes of health sector development and to complement existing efforts.

For more contact:

Dr. Heike Krumbiegel


Tel: + 855 23 88 44 76


To view the short documentary about the work of Epic Arts, visit GIZ Cambodia’s YouTube Channel:

Cambodian Organic Agricultural Association displays organic products at Cam-Inter Fair, 29-31 March 2013

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01 April 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia  – GIZ partner COrAA (Cambodian Organic Agricultural Association) presented their diverse organic produce lines at the recent Cam-Inter Fair from 29-31 March 2013. The fair took place at Diamond Island (Koh Pich).

Several members of COrAA displayed certified foodstuffs such as rice, vegetables, fruits and pepper.  Also on display were wild grape wine, textiles made from organic cotton as well as nutritional supplements prepared from Moringa. COrAA certifies organic products based on its Standards for Organic Crop Production and the Standards for Chemical-Free Crop Production.

For more information see
The association is assisted by GIZ technical adviser Winfried Scheewe (second from right).

Coaching Sessions for medical professionals to improve immediate newborn care

April 2013

Kampong Thom Province, Cambodia While Cambodia’s under-five mortality rate declined from 83 deaths per 1000 live births in 2005 to 54 in 2010, the neonatal mortality rate has stagnated during the same time frame (28 deaths/1000 live births in 2005 and 27 deaths/1000 live births in 2010). Neonatal deaths now account for more than half of all under-five deaths in Cambodia. The most common causes include infection, birth asphyxia and preterm deliveries.

Simple health procedures can save newborns lives

Preventative measures such as thorough drying, skin to skin contact, properly timed cord clamping and early breastfeeding have been show to save newborn’s lives. Additionally, ventilation of non-breathing babies within one minute after birth, or within the vital  “golden minute” also contributes to saving newborns at risk of post-natal death..

Immediate and thorough drying stimulates breathing and prevents hypothermia. Amongst many other benefits, sustained skin-to-skin contact initiates colonization of the newborn with maternal flora. Delaying cord clamping reduces the risk of anemia in preterm infants, and intraventricular hemorrhages. Early initiation and exclusive breastfeeding can prevent more than 95% of neonatal sepsis deaths.

Hands-on coaching sessions improve medical responseUntitled2 Kopie

Emphasizing the need to reduce neonatal mortality, Cambodia’s Ministry of Health requested WHO’s support to strengthen immediate newborn care in Kampong Cham province. In 2011, Dr. Howard Sobel (WHO) and Ms. Chris Newsome (pediatric nurse, RACHA), developed a 2-day training and piloted it in Kampong Cham province.

Based on the success of the pilot, the Ministry of Health decided to roll-out this training nationwide. Training of trainers for the Provincial Health Department and Operational District staff from all provinces is ongoing and will be finalized in 2013. Three facilitators and 5 co-facilitators from Kampong Thom province have already been trained in December 2012.

The Immediate Newborn Care (INC) coaching sessions are very hands-on. There are no lectures and all information is provided to participants in the form of questions. Evaluations during the training include written tests (pre- and post-test), measures of hand hygiene (using Glow Germ – see image) and demonstrations of the sequential steps. At the end of the second day, each participant has to demonstrate that he or she is able to carry out all steps of immediate newborn care in the correct order and in the correct time frame.

The steps for the breathing and non-breathing baby are assessed in two separate demonstrations and role-plays. If the participant is able to repeat the correct steps during a follow up supervision visit at the health facility, he or she will be given a certificate of successful course completion.

GIZ support contributes to 4 coaching sessions – 40 midwives trained

With the technical and financial support of the GIZ Rights Based Family Planning and Maternal Health project (Muskoka), the INC facilitators in Kampong Thom conducted 4 coaching sessions at the Baray Santuk referral hospitals in February and March 2013. A total of 40 midwives successfully demonstrated mastery of the sequential steps that may save a newborn’s life. Evaluations during the training include written tests (pre- and post-test), measures of hand hygiene (using Glow Germ) and demonstrations of the sequential steps.

The participants and their trainers after the completion of the first INC coaching session KopieNine coaching sessions ahead for 2013  – 130 medical professionals await training

With 9 additional coaching sessions planned in 2013, a total of 130 midwives and doctors will become proficient in correct immediate newborn care in Kampong Thom province. Giving health care workers the skills they need to provide all newborns with the care they require in the first minutes of life is a big step towards increasing the chances of survival for these precious new lives.

For more information please contact:

Dr. Klaus Hornetz


Tel: + 855 23 72 63 44



Karin Stubenbaum
GIZ MCH Advisor, Kampong Thom

Cambodian Officials Visit German Parliament to Improve Transparency of Public Finances

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10 April 2013

Phnom Penh, Cambodia During a recent study visit to Germany, Cambodian officials from the National Audit Authority, the Senate and Parliament had the opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge on how the close cooperation between the German Parliament and the German audit authority enhances transparency and accountability in the use and management of public resources.

Mr. Juergen Lehmberg, Team Leader of the GIZ project supporting the National Audit Authority in Cambodia, said during the study

visit “We expect that some of the best practices we have seen from German institutions will inspire participants to reflect on how similar models can be applied in Cambodia to make management of public funds more transparent and meaningful for all citizens”.

The Cambodian delegation visited Germany on March 18-27, 2013 and comprised Her Excellency Som Kimsuor, Audit General of the National Audit Authority; H.E. Chea Chet, Chairman of the Commission on Economy Finance Banking and Audit of the Senate; and H.E. Khek Sam On, member of the Commission on Economy Finance Banking and Audit of the National Assembly.

The Cambodian National Audit Authority was founded in 2000 to audit the Government’s budgeting and to guarantee proper management of public funds. The GIZ National Audit Authority Project began in 2006 with the goal of improving transparency and reliability of the Cambodian public finance system, including the implementation of regulations as part of the Second Strategic Development Plan of the Cambodian National Audit Authority.

Further information:

Mr. Juergen Lehmberg
Team Leader of the GIZ Support to the National Audit Authority Project

Tel: (+855) 12 333 101


All activities are implemented by GIZ on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

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