ITC defends its use of funds for Cambodian silk weavers


The International Trade Centre (ITC) has rejected criticisms over the misuse of expenses and funds for a sector-wide Cambodian silk project, saying its approach was appropriate and well managed.

Mao Thora, secretary of state for the Ministry of Commerce, had publicly criticised the ITC during a recent seminar, saying silk industry development has been weak despite funds being provided to the ITC to develop silk production in Cambodia. He alleged the centre spent money in meetings “coffee drinking and cake eating” with no travelling to meet people.

Commenting during the seminar on export diversification at the Export-Import and One Province, One Product exhibition, Mao Thora revealed that this year, another non-governmental organisation will be handed the funds to oversee silk industry development projects for the next two years, as there is now a lack of confidence in the ITC, which is a joint agency of the World Trade Organization and the United Nations.

However, Pheanuroth Sisowath, senior technical adviser to the ITC, said Mao Thora’s comments were “uninformed”, adding: “He has made these comments without knowing about our activities.”

For the full story, see the January 2013 edition of Textiles South East Asia. Not a subscriber? Subscribe HERE