Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Signs of building recovery

Signs of building recovery

Signs of building recovery

Cambodia's imports of construction materials increased substantially in the first five months when compared year on year, though insiders say the sector still sits below pre-crisis highs.

Some US$307 million worth of material such as steel, tiles, and cement were imported in 2011 to the end of May, from $76 million in the same period last year, according to statistics from the Ministry of Commerce’s Camcontrol Department.

Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction Director General Im Cham Rong said the government has noticed a recent uptick in construction projects.

“This shows the improvement of the sector reflecting our economic growth and peoples’ rising living standards especially in Phnom Penh city,” he said.

“We need to import [construction materials] to complement what we lack, and meet the increase in demand.”

Although the sector is showing signs of recovery, insiders say the construction industry still faces challenges.

National Valuers Association of Cambodia President Sung Bonna said the industry was generally on the upswing, though the market was not yet comparable to pre-crisis peaks in 2006 and 2007.

Much of the present development was conducted by local investors, though the sector had been driven by foreign investment in the pre-crisis stages, he said.

“We can say that projects which are developed by foreign investors have seen some recovery from the bottom,” said Sung Bonna, who is also President and CEO of Bonna Realty Group.

“However, we cannot compare to the boom period, so we just close our eyes and imagine we’re in a better state than the years of 2009 or 2010.”

Cambodia imports much of its construction materials from China, as well as Vietnam and Thailand, he added.

Angkeara Trading and Engineering Managing Director Uch Angkeara said the industry had shown signs of recovery. “We are seeing more signs of construction activity,” he said.


  • Hun Sen’s China visit ‘a good opportunity’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen’s visit to Beijing on Sunday to discuss economic and trade issues presents a good opportunity for the Kingdom to strengthen Chinese ties and counter punitive measures by the West, an analyst says. The prime minister’s four-day official visit to

  • ‘Action needed to stop road deaths doubling by next year’

    Minister of Interior Sar Kheng has expressed concern over the rate of traffic accidents, saying the death toll will double by 2020 if no effective preventive measures were put in place. At least five people on average are killed on Cambodian roads every day. The interior

  • Ministry to lose $60M a year in revenue

    The Ministry of Commerce will lose $60 million in revenue annually after the government eliminated export procedures in a campaign to boost competitiveness, a senior official at the ministry has said. Speaking at a press conference on Friday regarding the EU’s decision to impose safeguard

  • Deputy PM Prak Sokhonn holds Australia bilateral cooperation talks

    Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Prak Sokhonn met with Australian Senate president Scott Ryan on Saturday to discuss bilateral cooperation between the two nations. Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Ket Sophann could not be reached for comment on Sunday,