Sustainable Blue Economy Development in Cambodia: Status, Challenges, and Priorities
Cambodia is at the early stage of maximising the full potential of the blue economy, inclusively and sustainably, due to the lack of an integrated policy framework, clear strategies, and concrete actions. It is critical to address the immediate challenges in the decline of the health and well-being of the marine environment and coastal communities (marine fish stock decline, ecosystem degradation, and pollution). Cambodia also needs to incorporate marine spatial planning in its long-term development vision – strengthening institutional arrangements and capacity, human resources, and investment in coastal and marine infrastructure and technologies. An integrated and multisectoral approach to blue economy development, which places environmental sustainability and people at the centre, also needs to be developed. Cambodia should take advantage of the growing interest in the blue economy at the global, regional, and country levels through effective enforcement of existing laws and regulations; tapping sustainable financing, including blue financing; and participation in the global framework and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Blue Economy Cooperation Framework.