Cambodia's exports to Japan were worth $126 million in the first quarter of the year, a rise of 23 per cent quarter-on-quarter, from $102 million in 2012, according to statistics from the Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) which were released late last week.
Kiyotaka Doho, a representative of JETRO Cambodia, said the acceleration of exports to Japan could be attributed to growing ties between the two countries as well as a diversification of Cambodia’s exports.
In addition to long-established export sectors like garments and footwear, Doho told the Post last week, Cambodia’s exports of electrical machinery is also on the rise.
“Many Japanese manufacturers assemble automotive parts here [in Cambodia] and export to Japan,” he said, adding that growing Japanese investment in the country was largely responsible for the increase in exports.
The products Cambodia shipped to Japan included footwear, woven apparel, knitted apparel and electronic machinery. In return, Cambodia imports mainly machinery, vehicles, electronic machinery, meat, ships and boats, according to JETRO’s trade figures.
Michael Lor, Chief Executive Officer of Canadia Bank, which signed an agreement late last week with Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ to establish a business alliance in Cambodia, said Japanese investors are responding to Cambodia’s developing economy, and view the Kingdom as a good place for long-term investment.
“The economy is strong, and forecasts point to continued long-term growth as investors from a variety of industries and countries, notably Japan, make Cambodia their choice for investment,” Lor said.
While Cambodian goods exported to Japan were valued at $209 million in 2010, by the end of 2012, the value had reached $404 million.
According to JETRO’s figures, bilateral trade between Cambodia and Japan reached $177 million in the first three months this year, a 13 per cent rise compared with the corresponding period last year.