Acleda Bank Plc became the first Cambodian commercial bank to operate in a foreign country when it established operations in Laos on July 8. Acleda president and CEO In Channy said on July 7 before leaving for Vientiane for the opening of Acleda Bank (Lao) Ltd that the move had the full support of the Lao government. Channy said $10 million had been invested in Acleda Bank (Lao), which has its headquarters in Vientiane and branches in the southern cities of Savannakhet and Pakse. The bank employs ten Cambodians and about 80 Lao, many of whom received training at Acleda’s Phnom Penh headquarters in preparation for the opening. Acleda vice president Vann Tho said it was studying the possibility of making China the target of its next overseas venture, followed by Vietnam.
“Our aim to reach people everywhere who need financing,” said Tho. Acleda’s venture in Laos has the support of the National Bank of Cambodia, vice governor Neav Chanthana said on July 7. The NBC had encouraged Cambodian banks to establish operations overseas and Acleda was the first to do so, she said.