Cambodia approved five investment projects worth over $20 million in the first two weeks of this month that are expected to create 3,706 jobs, according to a report from the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC).
The CDC gave the green light for final registration certificates to Vanzel Printing & Packaging (Cambodia) Co Ltd’s $2.1 million factory in Kandal province’s Kandal Stung district, Windmill-Fy (Cambodia) Garments Co Ltd's $2.5 million plant in Kampong Speu province’s Kong Pisei district and Sparkbags (Cambodia) Co Ltd's $3.3 million project in Phnom Penh’s Kambol district, which will provide 300, 848 and 718 jobs, respectively.
The other two projects were Mcbag Co Ltd’s $3.5 million venture in Kandal's Ang Snuol district and Cambodian Qi Ming Xing Jia Ju Yong Pin Co Ltd's $9.1 million footwear, bag and belt factory in Preah Sihanouk province’s Prey Nop district, which will deliver 818 and 1,022 new jobs, CDC reported.
Hong Vanak, director of International Economics at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, told The Post on April 22 that every direct investment provides a host of benefits for the Kingdom’s economy, even if the number of CDC approvals or scale of the investments pale in comparison to earlier periods.
Endowed with a favourable geographical location, investment laws and diplomatic relations, boasting bilateral free trade agreements with a number of countries and regions, and retaining a regional charm, Cambodia expects to bring in sizeable investments down the line, he said.
"With the spread of Covid-19 putting a damper on things, not many are willing to invest, so this is more or less good news for Cambodia's economic hustle and bustle, especially [amid optimism that] the Covid-19 pandemic will be completely controlled soon," he said.
However, the Kingdom has yet to secure investment from the world’s largest companies, Vanak said, adding that this month’s CDC approvals were mainly focused in textile and travel products, which he pointed out are widely available on the EU, US and Canadian markets.
Cambodian textile exports plunged 13.35 per cent in 2020 to $4.35938 billion, from the $5.03078 billion chalked up in 2019, the Ministry of Commerce reported.
In 2020, the CDC approved 238 investment projects worth a total of $8.2 billion last year, down 12 per cent from 2019.