The Commerce Minister said yesterday that China is a potential market for Cambodia’s garment exports and some other agricultural products while the traditional big markets of Europe and the United States are experiencing an economic slowdown.
Cham Prasidh said at the sidelines of the Cambodia-China Trade and Investment Meeting in Phnom Penh that although the European countries and the United States face economic problems, China is still enjoying strong growth despite the global economic slowdown.
“China is the market which should not be avoided. When the crisis in Europe or others are still happening, China still has money because their economy is still high at around 7 per cent growth, so China is still the main driver for world economic growth,” he said.
“You see, China’s economy is ranked number two, above Japan and after the Unites States. So, the Chinese market is big and they’ve got a lot of money so that when we produce garments and some other textiles for export to Europe and the United States, even though they’re experiencing an economic crisis, we can export to China which is also duty free.”
Van Sou Ieng, president of Garment Manufacturers of Cambodia (GMAC), told the Post that presently the industry is trying to export more and more garment products to Chinese market as there is slow demand in the traditional markets.
Bilateral trade between Cambodia and China was valued at $2.5 million in 2011 while leaders of the two countries pledged to double the amount by 2017.
Cham Prasidh said that Cambodia has gained a lot of trade preferential systems which allow for duty free exports.
“Both ministers have discussed ways and means to help each other to promote more trade and more investment from China to Cambodia,” he said.
“It is a great opportunity for Cambodia to even export more to the Chinese market. At the same time, China can also come to buy or produce the products here and export back to China,” said Cham Prasidh.
To contact the reporter on this story: May Kunmakara at [email protected]