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After gaining peace and stability from its dark past, Cambodia has enjoyed robust growth since adopting free-market economic policies in the 1990s. From 2000 to 2015, Cambodia has sustained high GDP growth at an average of 7.9% (ADB). This continued upward trajectory is fueled by durable fundamentals.
Geographically, Cambodia is situated between two larger and more developed economies (Thailand and Vietnam) which creates economic spillover. Moreover, it is midway between China and India that are the most important growth area of 21st century. Its maritime trade is made easy through its sea border along the Gulf of Thailand.
All key roads and bridges have been upgraded to connect to neighboring countries. Its railroad system is being rehabilitated and the seaport in Sihanoukville is modernized and expanded to increase the capacity. Apart from that, river port has also been enlarged to have better access to Vietnam’s new deep sea ports; and 3 international airports are in place and some are being upgraded, enlarged, and modernized. These infrastructures make it easy for the transportation and distribution of products and services. It’s also beneficial for Cambodia to be a member to WTO as well as ASEAN, which results in regional and global trade benefits. In addition to those benefits, duty free and preferential export access to most developed economies (EU, USA) are also positive factors for investing in Cambodia.
With the population of approximately 15.2 million in 2014, of which 65.3% under the age of 30. It’s a young population that makes up a large workforce with the literacy rate of 79.7% (Ministry of Planning, 2013) of the total population. This is one of the lowest-cost workforces in Asia. Recently, their lifestyle has changed largely (mostly in the city and main provinces) due to increase in GDP per capita and purchasing power. They are now more likely to pay more for extra quality in products and services thanks to the trend of consumerism along with their higher expectations and income.
Despite, Cambodian economy is largely dollarized, investors can enjoy minimal foreign exchange risks as well as stable monetary policy and fiscal responsibility thanks to its central bank namely National Bank of Cambodia (NBC).
All in all, Cambodia presents an enormous potential business opportunity. With its political stability, strong economic growth, advantageous geography, well-established infrastructure, necessary legal framework, investors are encouraged through different schemes such as 100% foreign ownership (except land but possible for 99-year land leases), attractive investment incentives and Qualified Investment Project, and easy repatriation of profits.
Cambodia can offer unlimited opportunities from health care, leisure, construction, and energy to huge untapped natural resources and agro-industry business. We optimistically believe that Cambodia will definitely be part of your growth strategy.