The Institute of Standards of Cambodia developed 63 new standards last year, bringing the total number of certifications available from the government to 868, though one industry representative said the system still needed improvement in order to facilitate exports.
The new standards cover 11 sectors including electronics, chemical and construction sectors, as well as the agricultural field, according to Chin Kesar, director of the Standards Development Department at the Ministry of Industry and Handicrafts.
“Our standards are compliant to the international standards and recognised by trade countries” she said. “It will help the industry and producers to get rid of technical barriers, since it will ensure quality and safety . . . if we meet the standards, we will be able to increase our exports.”
But Te Taingpor, president of the Federation of Association for Small and Medium Enterprises, said while standards were a “key issue” for reaching international markets, Cambodia’s standards system was not always able to ensure access.
“I notice that . . . the products of neighbouring countries can enter our market, but our products cannot get into their market,” Taingpor said, noting that other countries’ standards were often more strict and numerous than Cambodia’s own system.
“We need our government to lobby and negotiate with them to ease their strictness,” he said.