Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Online registration option to be rolled out to SMEs

Online registration option to be rolled out to SMEs

Online registration option to be rolled out to SMEs

The Ministry of Industry and Handicraft will introduce an online registration platform for Cambodia’s small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) this year, a ministry official confirmed yesterday.

Heng Sok Kong, secretary of state at the ministry, said the new software for web registration was built in partnership with the International Finance Corporation. A three-month pilot project to teach businesses how to use it will commence later this year.

“The pilot project for the online registration will operate in regions like Siem Reap and Sihanoukville, where more people can access computers.”

Sok Kong said SMEs with start-up capital of $3,000 or more would be able to register using the new process, which will take businesses just two to three days to complete.

“If people go to the ministry instead, starting from handing documents from the ground level, it usually takes 10 to 15 days to finish the whole process,” he said.

“The online registration can reduce corruption, as the process is operated through internet banking. There will be more transparency.”

According to a 2011 government survey, only about 3.5 per cent of the 505,000 SMEs in Cambodia were registered with the government.

The IFC could not be reached for comment yesterday, but a 2010 report from the World Bank’s investment arm highlighted the importance of legal protection and fee transparency – two things missing for Cambodia’s thousands of unregistered SMEs.

“While some SMEs are registered and comply with the law, others providing the same products and services are not complying with the law, and enjoy unfair advantages and cost structures,” the IFC report found, calling for a streamlining of the process.

Sok Kong said online registration was one of many reforms being introduced for SMEs, to ensure they were competitive with ASEAN economic integration looming in 2015.

Te Taing Por, president of the Federation of Association for Small and Medium Enterprises of Cambodia, welcomed the new system as a means of cutting through bureaucracy.

“In the past, SMEs needed to register with all relevant ministries with different prices, and the processing time was very long,“ he said.

“It is necessary to have the online registration to keep in line with globalisation.”

However, Por added, not all SME operators in the Kingdom are internet savvy, and thus the process may take some time for local businesses to adapt to.

According to Sok Kong, the fee for online registration has yet to be confirmed, but traditionally registration fees have varied depending on a company’s start-up capital, with the smallest businesses having to pay $13 to register.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen asks Cambodians to believe in government

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Monday asked citizens and investors to trust that the government will overcome the challenges brought about by Covid-19 and the loss of the EU’s Everything But Arms (EBA) scheme. Speaking to reporters at the Peace Palace in Phnom Penh,

  • Westerdam passenger ‘never had’ Covid-19

    The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the US citizen that allegedly tested positive in Malaysia after travelling on the Westerdam was never infected with Covid-19 in the first place. In an article published in the newspaper USA Today on Friday, CDC

  • ‘Ghost staff’ found, $1.7M returned to state coffers

    The Ministry of Civil Service said more than seven billion riel ($1.7 million) in salaries for civil servants was returned to the state last year after it discovered that the books had been cooked to pay ‘ghost officials’. This is despite claims by the Ministry of

  • Tragedy as four lions devour teenager in Pakistan safari park

    In a horrifying incident at an animal park in the Pakistani city of Lahore, four lions killed a 17-year-old grass reaper. However, how Muhammad Bilal Hussain managed to get near the lions was yet to be ascertained. Safari officials said Hussain climbed a 3.7m high

  • Woman wanted for killing own son

    Police in Phnom Penh’s Meanchey district are on the lookout for a woman who allegedly hacked her son to death on Sunday in Stung Meanchey III commune. District police chief Meng Vimeandara identified the son as Chan Sokhom, 32. “The offender can’t escape forever.

  • H5N1 also poses deadly threat, ministry warns

    The Ministry of Health’s Communicable Disease Control (CDC) department has called on citizens to excise caution over H5N1 or bird flu that is spreading in the southern province of Vietnam. In a Facebook post, the department announced that it has made a series