Business opportunities in Cambodia increase


Phnom Penh is gaining a central role within supply chains. And it is increasingly opening up to international investment

Editorial by Lorenzo Lamperti

2022 is bringing Cambodia more and more in the global scene. Both politically, with the rotating chairmanship of ASEAN until next December 31, and economically. New industrial plants were opened in the first five months of the year in Cambodia at a much higher rate than the previous year. The new factories have already generated jobs for about 57,000 Cambodians. This is a clear sign of investor’s trust. In Phnom Penh's favor played an efficient management of the Covid-19 pandemic, which among other things also earned the commendation of the EU-ASEAN Business Council. However, measures put in place by the local government to boost international business are playing an important role. Under the new investment law enacted on October 15, 2021, foreign investors receive the same rights as domestic investors, except for land ownership. In addition, investments are open in every sector, and there are no restrictions on capital repatriation. The moment is also favorable for trade interchange. Between January and April, Cambodia exported goods worth 7.6 billion dollars. These were mainly clothing products, machinery, and electronic equipment but also manufactured goods such as bicycles, auto parts, furniture, leather, and plastics. The Italy-Cambodia partnership is an important tool for increasing ASEAN institutional capacity and has great economic potential in terms of both trade and investment. Trade between the two countries recovered in 2021 reaching 416 million euros, marking a 12% increase over the previous year. In a recent webinar organized by the Italian Cambodian Business Association in Cambodia (ICBA), with the support of the European Chamber of Commerce in Cambodia (Eurocham) and the Italy-ASEAN Association, Prof. Romeo Orlandi participated. The Vice President of the Italy-ASEAN Association stated how the opening path toward free trade is a key tool for the growth of Cambodia and other Southeast Asian countries. According to Orlandi, it is important to support the development of shared values to deepen bilateral cooperation. Not least because Phnom Penh is acquiring a more central role in supply chains.

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