Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Economic development requires rule of law: ESCAP

Economic development requires rule of law: ESCAP

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Garment factory workers produce items of apparel at a warehouse in Kandal province last year. Heng Chivoan

Economic development requires rule of law: ESCAP

Cambodia has enjoyed strong economic growth but needs to improve its governance and rule of law in order to promote greater development, the Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (Escap) said in a report released yesterday.

The UN agency noted in its Economic and Social Survey of Asia and the Pacific 2017 that Cambodia experienced steady 7.2 percent growth in 2016, led by the growth of garment exports.

“Exports of readymade garments, accounting for about 80 per cent of total exports, continued to expand well as a result of privileges enabling countries such as Cambodia to gain market access in developed countries,” it said, adding that the sector employed around 600,000 people in the Kingdom.

Oliver Paddison, chief of the Countries with Special Needs section at Escap, said Cambodia needs to address its poor performance in terms of rule of law to increase its development growth. The survey specifically mentioned issues of land acquisitions and property rights.

“Essentially, you cannot develop if you do not improve governance, you cannot develop if you don’t improve transparency, if you don’t improve accountability,” he said.

He also noted that Cambodia’s transition from low-skill to high-skill industry is showing positive signs. However, he added that the Kingdom needed to improve education and skills training if it wanted to eventually move to higher value economic output.

“I also saw there is a large percentage of the population still working in the rural sector,” he said.

“The problem there is that labour surpluses can’t always be absorbed into the industrial sector because of this whole education story.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • PM vows to protect Hun family

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has vowed to continue his fight against opposition politicians who he said intend to smash the Hun family. Without naming the politicians but apparently referring to former leaders of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Hun Sen said there

  • Cambodia lauded for fight against Covid-19

    Cambodia has drawn global accolades for its handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, with a new report finding that the Kingdom has controlled the pandemic better than any other country in Asia. Dr Takeshi Kasai, director of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Western Pacific region,