Independent financial information provider Credit Bureau (Cambodia) Co Ltd (CBC) now maintains the credit data of more than seven million customers in its core system, 10 years after its establishment, according to its chairwoman Chea Serey.

CBC has been key in the organisation of Cambodia’s financial data infrastructure, and aims to support member banks and financial institutions in promoting transparency and efficiency in the credit market, said Serey, who doubles as the assistant governor of the National Bank of Cambodia (NBC).

She was speaking at a September 30 event marking the 10th anniversary of the CBC’s establishment. Of note, the Ministry of Commerce’s business registry shows that the financial information provider was incorporated on November 29, 2011.

Chea Serey was speaking at a September 30 event marking the 10th anniversary of the CBC’s establishment. CBC

Without the CBC, banking and financial institutions in Cambodia on the whole would face notably higher operating costs and lack important information on borrowers, resulting in greater credit risks, she claimed, stressing that comprehensive and transparent credit information is the top priority for risk management and financial stability.

The firm’s credit sharing system is available for banking and financial institutions to monitor loan risks and overall credit pressure, and serves as a tool for the NBC to better understand the national lending landscape and its associated risk profile, so as to take timely and effective measures to avoid and minimise potential adverse effects, according to Serey.

“The CBC presents a very secure, transparent and accountable credit information sharing system that really helps to make the financial credit market more favourable, by reducing loans made with a lack of information on borrowers.

“The CBC has contributed significantly to the growth of the financial sector and the credit market, not only that, but it has helped Cambodians access credit from a wider range of sources and further prosper year after year. The CBC not only maintains negative credit history information, but also the positives, to encourage borrowers to use credit responsibly,” she said.

Speaking at the same event, NBC deputy governor Ouk Maly commented that, as a major component of the financial infrastructure, the CBC’s credit sharing systems are crucial in supporting responsible, efficient and equitable lending, reducing credit risks for banking and financial institutions, and fostering financial inclusion in Cambodia.

She said the NBC encourages the CBC and the financial institutions within its ranks to work closely with the central bank, “to maintain financial stability and enhance sustainable development in the banking system, through the provisions in force”.

Also at the event, CBC CEO Oeur Sothearath said his firm was established in 2012 with just 51 members, a figure that has more than tripled to 181 today. Since its inception, the CBC has provided financial information services, data analysis tools and credit reports to all manner of financial institutions and consumers in Cambodia.

He said the CBC helps clients and members manage risks and make quick decisions through services such as: consumer credit reports, K-Scores, data analytics, credit monitoring and other on-demand data solutions.

According to Sothearoath, the K-Score, or Khmer Score, is a measure of “applicants’ potential credit risk at the point of application and predicts the likelihood of payment default in the next 12 months”.

“As the economy booms, our company is constantly researching and developing more products to ensure that we can provide exceptional services to our member institutions,” he said.