A ceremony to present certificates to graduating trainees and to launch new English training courses took place on Wednesday 20 July 2016 at the Senate of Cambodia. This was organized by the General Secretariats of the Senate and National Assembly, and the Parliamentary Institute of Cambodia. A total of 41 trainees have now successfully completed their training program, which began in

September 2015 and finished in June 2016. The training was designed for English language skill acquisition at the different levels of pre-intermediate and intermediate, and for use in the specific context of ASEAN and for parliamentary research.

Mr Hem Kosal, a trainee who has just completed the ASEAN Preparation Courses, was among those at the ceremony voicing pride in the level of the English skills that he had achieved as a result of his training with PIC. He was already using these new skills in his day-to-day work and research at the Senate, he said.

In his congratulatory speech, HE Mr Srun Dara, the Deputy Secretary General of the National Assembly, said that, PIC’s activities had expanded from an initial focus solely on the Cambodian parliament, PIC had evolved into a training institute for other countries in the region. Trainees should be proud of the PIC training they had received, he added. HE Mr Srun Dara ended his speech by encouraging trainees to show commitment in taking full advantage of this English training opportunity.

Announcing the launch of the new English training courses, HE Mr Oum Sarith, the Secretary General of the Senate, assured trainees that English proficiency skills would provide three major benefits: first, successful staff would have built their own capacity; second, staff would be able to build their professional careers; and, finally, staff would be equipped to seize work opportunities not just nationally, but also regionally within other ASEAN countries. Therefore, he urged trainees undertaking the new courses to participate in the programs fully and actively to fulfill the criteria for success. In conclusion, the Secretary General expressed his appreciation for Sida and SDC as the main supporting partners of the new training initiative, and for PIC as a key partner for strengthening parliamentary capacity.

The new training courses will take about six months beginning from 1 Aug 2016. A total of 80 candidates from the Senate and National Assembly have been invited to enroll for different levels of the English program.