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Tomato Specialized Bank makes giant strides in Cambodia

Tomato Specialized Bank (TSB) has had a tumultuous innings in Cambodia. Right from its inception in 2008, the bank has been experiencing a series of poor performances. In 2015, for instance, TSB’s net profit amounted to $78,000 and a high non-performing loan (NPL) ratio of 14.4 percent. However, things have taken a turn for the better for TSB with the introduction of advanced bank operation practices with active loan disbursements.

Inmate drug testing launches

Military police show evidence of a drug-smuggling operation in Trapaing Phlong Prison uncovered last year. Photo supplied

More than 4,000 inmates at Prey Sar prison have been tested for drugs in the week since testing began in what will soon be a nationwide effort, with 23 testing positive for methamphetamine, according to prisons officials. The universal testing initiative comes amid a national war on drugs launched on January 1, and after the exposure last year of drug dealing networks operating out of prisons, and the establishment of a committee tasked with investigating drug trafficking on the inside.

Border casinos poised to fold

Employees operate gaming tables for the online operation of a casino in Bavet in November 2015.

Vietnam's decision to partially lift the long-standing ban that prevented Vietnamese citizens from entering casinos in their own country could spell disaster for gaming resorts in the Cambodian border town of Bavet. A decree issued by the Vietnamese government on Friday allows casinos operating in Vietnam to apply for a three-year trial licence that would allow Vietnamese citizens over the age of 21, and who are able to prove they have a monthly income of at least 10 million dong ($443), to place bets in their gaming hall.

CIA took dim view of Sihanouk

The late King Norodom Sihanouk waves to bystanders on his way to greeting then-Indonesian president Suharto in Phnom Penh in 1997. Afp

Recently declassified CIA documents reveal that the agency had a less than flattering opinion of the late King Norodom Sihanouk, predicting that his vanity and pride would inevitably lead to the dissolution of his partnership with the Khmer People’s National Liberation Front (KPNLF).

“He is still capable of pulling off one of his patented ‘grand gestures’ that could seriously complicate or even totally undermine ASEAN’s current Cambodia strategy,” a 1985 intelligence report reads.

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Turkish Embassy calls for closure of Zaman schools

With an attempted coup against the government of President Recep Erdogan quashed only days ago and more than 7,000 alleged conspirators now under arrest, the Turkish ambassador to Cambodia yesterday pressed the govern

CNRP lawmakers beaten

Two opposition lawmakers, Nhay Chamroeun and Kong Sakphea were beaten unconscious during protests in Phnom Penh, as over a thousand protesters descended upon the National Assembly.

Student authors discuss "The Cambodian Economy"

Student authors discuss "The Cambodian Economy"

Students at Phnom Penh's Liger Learning Center have written and published a new book, "The Cambodian Economy".

NGOs may have stymied government health care: report

A health official takes a blood sample from a villager during a screening for HIV in Kandal province last year. Afp

A new study examining the development of health care in post-conflict societies suggests that the influx of NGOs in Cambodia may have weakened the government health sector. The report, published last week by BioMed Central, compares Cambodia’s health care development after the fall of the Khmer Rouge to post-conflict health care development in Uganda, Sierra Leone and Zimbabwe.

Credit shows signs of cooling off

Customers avail banking services at an Acleda Bank branch in Phnom Penh. File photo

Credit growth in Cambodia saw a marginal slowdown last year while deposits continued to increase sharply, a combination that some in the financial sector believe reflects a more cautious lending environment and central bank interventionist policies beginning to take hold. The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) announced yesterday in its annual report that credit growth has gradually slowed in recent years from 31 percent in 2014 down to 23 percent in 2016.