Cambodia enjoys peaceful Khmer New Year

Cambodia enjoys peaceful Khmer New Year

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Cambodian people celebrated Chol Chnam Thmay (traditional New Year) festival from April 13-16 in an atmosphere of unity, excitement, and joy, Vietnam News Agency correspondents in Phnom Penh reported on April 16.

On this occasion, many people left Phnom Penh to return to their hometowns for the festival celebration while hundreds of thousands of Cambodian people who work in neighbouring countries returned home to reunite with their families in the largest festival of the year in this Southeast Asian country.

This year, Cambodia did not organise the national-scale Angkor Songkran – an event for exhibiting Khmer traditions, cultures, and the works of Khmer ancients through pictures, traditional and cultural dances, and traditional games and dances – in Siem Reap province as in previous years. However, similar activities were held in Phnom Penh and other localities.

The event held in Phnom Penh attracted big crowds, especially Cambodian youth and foreign tourists. Local authorities arranged specialised vehicles to spray water on the festival goers, bringing a joyful, vibrant, and fresh atmosphere, particularly in the hot weather in April, when the temperature sometimes even reaches 40 degrees Celsius.

During the 2024 Chol Chnam Thmay celebrations, King Norodom Sihamoni of Cambodia conveyed his best wishes to the citizens, emphasising the festival’s importance in fostering unity and preserving the cherished traditions of the Khmer community.

Meanwhile, in a message to the people, Cambodian Prime Minister Samdech Thipadei Hun Manet reviewed the country’s achievements in all fields in 2023 and the first months of this year. He said that Cambodia’s economy posted a growth of 5.6% in 2023 and is forecast to grow by 6.6% in 2024. Cambodia’s per capita income increased from 1,785 USD in 2022 to 1,917 USD in 2023 and is expected to reach 2,071 USD in 2024.

Prime Minister Hun Manet emphasised six priority policy programmes of the 7th-tenure Royal Government of Cambodia including solutions to improve and enhance people’s lives, especially poor and vulnerable families. Cambodia strives to become a high-income country with a strong economy and good quality of life for its people by 2050.

Chol Chnam Thmay is the largest festival of the year in Cambodia – a country with more than 5,100 temples and over 90% of its population of about 17 million people being Buddhist. VNA

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