Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - SMEs association says it’s fed up with government inaction

SMEs association says it’s fed up with government inaction

Employees work on a production line on the outskirts of Phnom Penh.
Employees work on a production line on the outskirts of Phnom Penh. Hong Menea

SMEs association says it’s fed up with government inaction

The Federation of Association for Small- and Medium-Sized Enterprises of Cambodia (Fasmec) slammed the government yesterday in a meeting with the Ministry of Industry and Handicraft, claiming that the government has been ineffective in finding solutions to help domestic companies.

Te Taing Por, president of Fasmec, said that it had put forth 23 challenges that small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) face six months ago, with almost all of them having “unacceptably” gone unanswered by the government.

“We were asked to raise the challenges and there has been no solution,” he said. “What is the solution? We hold these meetings and the government just reads out the solutions without asking Fasmec whether we accept them or not.”

“So there is no solution, and we are not satisfied with that,” he added.

Some of the 23 challenges raised by Fasmec include requesting that the government stops the spread of counterfeit products, opens up export channels, reduces taxes on SMEs, helps with the lack of financing and speeds up quality control procedures.

Kim Touch, secretary of state at the Ministry of Industry, attempted to deflect criticism raised by Fasmec during the heated debate, claiming consumer habits had to change to support domestic companies.

“We have to change the habits of our consumers to support domestic products, and consumers also have to trust their quality,” he said.

“We have to set up a policy to protect logos and trademarks as well as packaging in order to advertise the domestic products to the public.”

However, he said the Ministry of Industry could not alone solve all the complaints raised by Fasmec, citing the often overlapping bureaucratic hurdles between different ministries.

“All the challenges raised are also related with other ministries, so we need to hear from them before we try to solve the problems and this takes time for our procedures to work,” he said.

Meav Soktry, secretary general of Cambodia Swiftlet Federation, an organistion that promotes the exports of bird’s nests, claimed that Ministry of Commerce and the Ministry of Agriculture have dragged their feet in helping promote market access.

“The government always says that they will find a solution,” he said. “But when we ask them, they only respond with sorry, we are still working on it.”

MOST VIEWED

  • Gov’t not using EU aid for poor

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Tuesday refuted as “baseless”, claims that the government had used financial aid from the EU to implement the programme to identify and support poor and vulnerable people during the Covid-19 pandemic. The prime minister was responding to Roth Sothy, a

  • Thai fence said to prevent illegal crossing

    Battambang and Banteay Meanchey provincial police say Thailand is not invading Cambodia after a series of social media posts about fences being built on the border raised alarms. Banteay Meanchey police chief Ath Khem said on Tuesday the information on social media on Sunday and

  • PM to vet NY holiday dates

    The Ministry of Economy and Finance submitted a letter to Prime Minister Hun Sen asking him to formally set a five-day national holiday from August 17-21 to make up for the Khmer New Year holiday in April that was postponed. Finance minister Aun Pornmoniroth sent

  • Cambodia rejects UN rights claim

    Cambodia's Permanent Mission to the UN Office in Geneva on Friday hit back at David Kaye, the UN special rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression after he raised concerns over the repression of free speech and

  • Snaring may spawn diseases

    The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) has warned that snaring of animals has become a crisis that poses a serious risk to wildlife in Southeast Asia and could spawn the transmission of zoonotic diseases to humans. Its July 9 report entitled Silence of the Snares: Southeast Asia’

  • Ex-party leader, gov’t critic named as secretary of state

    A former political party leader known for being critical of the government has been appointed secretary of state at the Ministry of Rural Development, a royal decree dated July 9 said. Sourn Serey Ratha, the former president of the Khmer Power Party (KPP), told The Post

  • Residence cards set for over 80,000 immigrants

    The Ministry of Interior plans to grant residence cards to more than 80,000 immigrants to better keep track of them. The ministry announced the plan on July 10, following the results of an immigration census. “An inter-ministerial committee and many operational working groups have been set up

  • Kingdom produces PPE gear

    Medical supplies from Cambodia have been donated to member countries of the Asian Development Bank (ADB) to assist in the fight against Covid-19, said an ADB report published on July 9. The report stated that the supplies were donated as a response to global efforts to

  • Kingdom, US vow stronger ties

    At an academic forum on Saturday to celebrate 70 years of Cambodia-US diplomatic ties, Cambodian researchers and officials expressed hope of encouraging US investments and for that country to deepen and improve its bilateral relations. Held at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, it reviewed the past 70

  • ‘Single Portal’ integrated registration system welcomes nearly 50 firms

    Forty-seven companies have successfully registered via a newly-launched information technology e-business registration platform as of the end of the second week of this month, Ministry of Economy and Finance secretary of state Phan Phalla said. Six ministries and state-run institutions have been integrated into a