– Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen, Distinguished National and International Guests,
– Dear Lecturers, Government Officials, and Students,
Today it is my great pleasure to join Your Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen in the awarding ceremony for six batches of graduates — the 21st and 22nd batches of engineer, 1st and 2nd batches of bachelor of engineering, and 10th and 11thbatches of advanced technicians — who graduated in 2006 and 2007. It is also my 16th appearance at the Institute of Technology of Cambodia.
According to the reports of Ms. Pheung Sackona, rector of the institute; and H.E. Mr. Mak Vann, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, I am pleased to see that Cambodia’s knowledge bases and human resource development in the area of engineering have progressed on the right track by adhering to the high quality standard as an important objectives. These are deserved outcomes that reflect all the efforts and sacrifice made by the personnel, lecturers and the management of the institute as well as by all students, including the 440 graduates who have overcome all obstacles to absorb knowledge, know-how, moral, and culture. I would like to highly value and express my sincere appreciation for these achievements.
Taking this opportunity, on behalf of the people and Royal Government of Cambodia, I would like to express my profound gratitude to the people and Government of France through H.E. Jean François Desmazieres, Ambassador of France to the Kingdom of Cambodia; to AUF, CUD, JICA, and other partner countries, agencies, national and intentional NGOs that have provided financial, technical, and mental support to the institute directly as well as other higher education institutes to raise quality standard and promote development of education sector in Cambodia.
Indeed, Cambodia’s integration into the region and also globalization create a new face and role of Cambodia in the international community. These represent our accomplishment, and also golden chance for the RCG’s Win-Win Strategy to timely realize its dream of moving country into the new millennium with fruit of peace and seed of happiness for its next generation.
The peace being enjoyed by the people is indeed the outcomes of mutual trust and understandings. In this sense, as a leader, I am highly proud to see Cambodian people who used to believe in different ideologies and beliefs, as the result of almost three decades of civil war since the 70s, are able to reclaim their identity and nature by gathering and transforming their various beliefs into forgiveness, harmonization and peace. Presently, all Cambodian people are building up on this belief to create the fundamentals of understanding and strength in the national development in order to move this country into the globalization path of the 21st century.
Clearly, the world of this millennium is not really enjoying 100% peace. The world is receiving two entirely opposite forces, namely globalization and division. The new explanations of globalization and division concepts are emerging. Globalization is the era of technology development, exchange of experiences through the modern transfer of knowledge and technologies from one side of the world to another side, also the superiority to determine a nation’s potential over another nation. In this sense, globalization is both cooperation and competition. Therefore, globalization does not only bring about development, a number of setbacks is also associated with this new trend. For example, excessively dramatic flow of capital from one place to another, which is not seen before, can be a source of inflation, environmental problems and climate change, terrorism, drug and human trafficking and so on. These problems sometimes widen the gap and distribution between developed countries and developing or poor countries.
Furthermore, this division had forced indirectly certain countries and groups into isolations and separation, which chose violence as solutions that in turns can easily trigger civil war. Hence, we must not forget that once we utilize technology as weapon to secure economic advantage at fierce market while economies and development keep expanding, education and training demand further perfectness. In this context, technology engineers bear bigger role and responsibilities in the course of this evolution. Indeed, any human developments are caused by force of engineers, technicians, researchers and innovative ideas. These are result of long history and the ties through which this impetus had linked technology, market and the state. Obviously, science has provided and widely spread knowledge, never seen in previous centuries, and spur remarkable change in life style in the world. Market has catalyzed new taste for creativity, adventure, search and launch of new products against demand as well as dominance of new market. Lastly, the state is to ensure basic interest of nation and people on basis of virtue which ensure balance between market openness and sense of equitable responsibilities in society.
Truly, Cambodian economic growth during last several years are clear example of gradual success of poverty reduction through promotion of economic growth by ensuring balance and consistencies of fundamentals of technology, market and state. On the other hand, it is important to ensure that these transformations happen along with necessary legal framework. Because, the value of each society is not restricted to only economy, otherwise anything including national identity and culture can become goods. In this regards, the government is to ensure that social and economic development system must be a model on basis of stability, balance and accountable market economy. Therefore, all walks of Cambodian life have role, duty and responsibility in development and preservation of the nation. Our nation, in which nature of mercy, forgiveness and sharing has been continuously passed on from one generation to another and from one family to another. Cambodian history taught definitely bitter lesson, because of leaders own ambition and greed; Cambodia democratic Pol Pot regime divided population into new and old one, sparked social class hatred between intellectuals, farmers, workers, the rich and the poor through painting a working and capitalist classes.
The human resource development with quality to response to the national need as well as to effectively use the national intellectual foundation is not only the improvement in Cambodian economy but also the long term vision of the Royal Government of Cambodia in strengthening the competitive ability in the 21st century. In this spirit, I would like to push the Institute of Technology of Cambodia (ITC) to continue its efforts in ensuring the quality, enlarging more extensive training programs with practical technological innovations conforming to the regional and international standard in an attempt to transform this center to be an institution for intellectual competition between Cambodia and the region.
Furthermore, I would like to encourage and appreciate various research projects conducted by ITC, which is the practical need of the society for development.
In the mean time, the spirit of cooperation among partner countries either French speaking, English speaking countries, countries in the region or in other continents needs to be promoted further as such cooperation always brings about national respect and support in terms of knowledge transfer, technology, national civilization, which lead to the living with harmonization, understanding and peace among nations in the context of new era of international community.
Taking this opportunity, I would like to thank the people and government of France again through H.E. Jean FranÇois Desmazieres for supporting the ITC for more than 10 years and for helping in various aspects of training and educational quality of higher education in Cambodia.
I would like to also express thanks to the other development partners such as the former Soviet Union, Belgium, Japan, New Zealand, India and especially the community of ASEAN Technological University Network, which opens its door for cooperation with ITC at present and in the future.
I would like to thank other development partners such as former Soviet Union, Belgium, Japan, New Zealand, India and in particular to Network of ASEAN Science and Technology University that wider cooperate with ITC in the present and future.
Knowledge is an incomplete basket that needs to constantly fill out and is an abstract basket of everything around us and always bigger than we are, because the more we learned or gained, the bigger we can see the knowledge extend. Therefore, constant learning, everywhere and in every form even after leaving the university is obligation for all of us. The context of the new era has made changes in every fronts including habit, it is necessary for all of you to determine your future by yourself through changing from the habit of waiting and accepting free things to initiative, creative and innovative habit. In return, these factors will positively transform you into a capable technical workers or technicians with conscious and virtue. As the result, it can help not only oneself for living, but also contribute to honor, dignity and returns to parents and families who made sacrifices in the sake of your study. Especially, it will contributes to the society as a whole in entering into the globalization movement in the new millennium and being equal with civilized countries of the world.
Finally, I would like to wish the graduates with the success and happiness in the future and I would like to wish all of you the five gems of Buddhist blessings.