Government Achieved Less Than 40 Percent of 2015 Policy Targets

The government fully achieved 6 out of 16 measureable policy targets last year, according to a re­port re­leased by the Committee for Free and Fair Elections (Com­frel) on Tuesday.

The fulfilled targets included 7 percent annual economic growth, 1 percent poverty reduction, an increase in foreign tourists and the creation of a national jobs policy, according to Comfrel.

Targets related to access to running water, electrification in villages and schooling had only been “partly ful­filled,” while the remaining three platform promises were unmet—and unlikely to be achieved anytime soon—said a state­ment released with the report.

“These include maintenance of ex­isting forest cover and implementation of retirement allowance in the pri­vate sector and improvement of ru­ral roads,” the statement said.

The study was based on data from NGOs, news outlets and state institutions, the state­ment said.

“A policy is considered failed if it is less than 20 percent complete, partly fulfilled if up to 50 percent complete, and fulfilled if almost 100 percent is complete,” said Koul Panha, director of Comfrel.

For 17 targets that were more subjective—such as anti-corruption efforts—the organization conducted a nationwide survey of 797 potential voters. Only 26 percent were fully satisfied with the government’s work on those targets, while 62 percent were partly satisfied and 12 percent not satisfied.

Tith Sothea, a spokesman for the Council of Ministers, said it was important to look at the broader successes and reforms overseen by the government.

“Economic growth is a very big success achieved with political stability and sustainable development,” he said.

However, opposition lawmaker Son Chhay said some of the government’s achievements, par­tic­ularly poverty reduction, were questionable.

“People may be able to earn a bit more money, but many people are in debt,” he said.

(Additional Reporting By Tej Parikh)

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