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Japanese firms explore Cambodia after quake

A DELEGATION of Japanese companies are in Phnom Penh exploring opportunities in agriculture and tourism, though this month’s earthquake has impacted potential investment to the Kingdom.

Some 85 representatives from 49 Japanese Small and Medium Enterprises are touring the Kingdom, but more had been slated to come before the recent disaster struck, according to Shusaku Nakamura, Chairman of the International Investment Institute of Japan.

“Actually, there could have been a total of 120 businesspeople here if we didn’t have the earthquake – some have delayed their trips,” he said on the sidelines of a conference yesterday. “It is their first time seeking opportunities here [in Cambodia].

“They are from different sectors – food processing, agriculture, restaurants, and the construction industry.”

Speaking at yesterday’s conference, Minister of Commerce Cham Prasidh said he encouraged Japanese firms to invest in the Kingdom, highlighting the duty-free status many Cambodian exports enjoyed abroad. Larger Japanese firms often take years looking at markets before making investment decisions, while investors from countries such as China were already coming to Cambodia, he said. He said smaller Japanese firms – such as the conference attendees - may have more flexibility to make decisions.

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