Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Government hopes decentralisation boosts business registration

Government hopes decentralisation boosts business registration

A motorcycle passes a row of small retail stores along Sothearos Boulevard in Phnom Penh.
A motorcycle passes a row of small retail stores along Sothearos Boulevard in Phnom Penh. Pha Lina

Government hopes decentralisation boosts business registration

To promote the registration of small- and medium-size enterprises (SMEs), the Ministry of Industry and Handicraft will begin early next year to decentralise the process by granting provincial government officials the authority to register businesses.

Oum Sotha, spokesman of Ministry Industry and Handicraft, said that this downstream initiative would help speed up the registration process as well as giving authorities the ability to quickly inspect business operations.

“The decentralisation initiative for SMEs will begin sometime next year,” he said. “We are doing this to help solve the challenges SMEs face and it can potentially lead to the establishment of new federations of businesses that operate in the same sector.”

“When you have individual business federations working together, it is easier for us to make sure that they are following the law and the criteria for quality standards,” he added.

He added that another reason for this initiative was because the ministry believed that many businesses were deliberately flying under the radar and avoiding registration.

“So far this year, there has been a slow amount of businesses registering and we believe that as many as 50 percent of new SMEs have not bothered to register,” he added.

According to ministry data, only 221 SMEs registered with the government by the end of November, bringing the total to 39,362. While Sotha could not provide data for a percentage growth of registration, he said the ministry believes there are approximately 100,000 SMEs operating in the Kingdom.

Te Taing Por, president of Federation of Association for Small- and Medium-Size Enterprises of Cambodia (Fasmec), said that while a decentralised system was good, the government has repeatedly fallen short of developing a dedicated SME policy for the whole sector.

“The ministry should put more importance in setting up a SME policy to ensure transparency and fair competition in the market,” he said. “But right now the government discourages registration because those that do register pay taxes, while those that do not continue to operate as normal.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Hungarian exposes 90 to Covid in Siem Reap

    The Ministry of Health has discovered 90 people who have been exposed directly or indirectly to a Hungarian man infected with Covid-19. They all are required to quarantine at home and the hospital. The ministry is searching for other affected people. Among the 90, one is the

  • PM warns of ‘new Cold War’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said the possibility of a so-called new Cold War has become a significant concern and that all countries have to reject outright, any attempt to allow history to tragically repeat itself. He made the remarks in a speech during 75th Session

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • ‘Bad news is an investor’s best friend’ – unlocking investment potential in Cambodia

    It is time to shop. Economic woes provide good pickings for investors if they know where to look The poem If, written by English Nobel laureate poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling for his son circa 1895, is widely perceived as fatherly advice for John who would

  • Cambodia, CRF win rice battle in EU Court

    The European General Court has rejected the European Commission’s (EC) request to reject a complaint submitted by Cambodia and the Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF) regarding the EU’s reintroduction of tariffs on Indica rice exports from Cambodia. A court order uploaded to the European

  • PM requests Russia’s Covid vaccine

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that Russia provide Cambodia with its Covid-19 vaccine after the former announced it planned on mass vaccinating its population next month. The request came on Thursday through the prime minister’s Facebook page as he met with Anatoly Borovik,