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Cambodia must seek new trade partners

Cambodia must seek new trade partners

Cambodia will no doubt look to partners other than the US and the European Union to bolster its economic growth as those key export markets continue to struggle, a senior International Monetary Fund official says.

One way in which Cambodia would forge new and growing relationships with higher-income economies was through their relocation of manufacturing operations to the Kingdom, Abdul Abiad, deputy division chief in the IMF’s Research Department, said on the sidelines of last week’s World Economic Outlook.

“I think that’s going to help, because they’re going to increase production,” he said, adding that the rise in garment manufacturing also helped to boost the amount of capital generated in Cambodia.

The country would then become more resilient to outside factors such as the slowdowns in the West, Abiad said.

Commerce Minister Cham Prasidh told the Post at this month’s ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh he was not concerned about the  issues affecting the United States and the European Union.

The Kingdom was seeking out other markets to which to ship its goods, he said.

“We are also building some trade inside ASEAN through free-trade agreements with China, Japan, Korea, India, Australia and New Zealand. That will provide more help.”

Cham Prasidh predicted Cambodia’s exports would grow by about 25 per cent this year, a momentum the garment-dominated industry has maintained since 2010.

To contact the reporter on this story: May Kunmakara at [email protected]

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