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Aid Dependence in CambodiaHow Foreign Assistance Undermines Democracy$
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Sophal Ear

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780231161121

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231161121.001.0001

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An International Problem

An International Problem

The Cambodian Response to Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza

(p.87) 3 An International Problem
Aid Dependence in Cambodia

Sophal Ear

Columbia University Press

This chapter explores the effectiveness of foreign aid and the effects of aid dependence by focusing on Cambodia’s response to highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). The first victim of HPAI was discovered not in Cambodia but in a hospital in Vietnam in January 2005, causing alarm in the developed world. Large new infusions of donated funds went into Cambodia, and huge initiatives were taken to combat HPAI’s spread. Cambodia’s HPAI response demonstrates pervasive weakness in the Cambodian policy process. Lack of good governance and political will is evident in repeated institutional failures, unwillingness to commit state funds, and failure to protect the livelihood of the poor. There is also evidence of distortions of aid dependence in international donors’ uncoordinated plans, failure to take steps to protect and educate the poor appropriately, and excessive emphasis on preventing the spread of HPAI to developed countries.

Keywords:   foreign aid, aid dependence, Cambodia, highly pathogenic avian influenza, Vietnam, governance, political will, poor, developed countries, international donors

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