Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Sustainability disclosure database for local firms launched

Sustainability disclosure database for local firms launched

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) secretary-general Sok Chenda Sophea. CDC Heng Chivoan

Sustainability disclosure database for local firms launched

Cambodia, with support from the World Economic Forum (WEF), on May 12 launched the Supplier Database with Sustainability Dimensions (SD2) database, the first of its kind, to provide information on the sustainability operations of domestic companies.

SD2 will serve as a key platform linking international and domestic firms that invest in the Kingdom or are seeking new partnerships.

An in-person and virtual ceremony was hosted by the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) and WEF to commemorate the launch, which CDC noted will be especially advantageous for domestic suppliers that can provide quality goods and services.

“The database aims to both facilitate investment and contribute to significant development impact. Domestic suppliers can register their companies on the database, thus promoting their businesses with potential investors who regularly visit [the] CDC website,” CDC said in an announcement.

Delivering the event’s opening remarks, CDC secretary-general Sok Chenda Sophea said SD2 will better equip international investors to seize investment opportunities and strike partnerships with suitable domestic companies.

“We hope that investors and foreign firms will see that Cambodia is creating a welcoming investment climate, while being committed to responsible and sustainable business.

“As a relatively small country, Cambodia can set itself apart by being a pioneer in facilitating sustainable investment,” he said. “We invite all investors to use SD2 and find qualified domestic partners.”

Matthew Stephenson, a policy and community lead for International Trade and Investment at WEF, said at the launch that the database will be a tool for international firms that wish to invest or do business in Cambodia.

“Foreign firms that seek to follow ESG [environmental, social and corporate governance] principles can contract more with Cambodian firms that operate sustainably, and other Cambodian firms may shift their operations to be increasingly sustainable to attract, and qualify for, such contracts.

“Other countries may wish to consider also adding sustainability dimensions to their existing suppliers’ databases, long considered a key tool to facilitate investment,” Stephenson said.

SD2 is managed by CDC and was developed as part of the “Investment Facilitation for Sustainable Development in Cambodia” (IFSDC) project, which CDC launched early in 2019 aiming to collect practical, on-the-ground insights on countries’ experiences with investment facilitation measures.

CDC began its collaborative journey with WEF in May 2019 to carry out the IFSDC project, with the Cambodia Partnership for Sustainable Agriculture’s (CPSA) support.

In May-June 2019, WEF and CPSA conducted expert interviews with more than 50 stakeholders to better encapsulate how to increase investment flows into the Kingdom, in terms of quantity and quality.

Following two workshops and further consultations later that year, creating SD2 was identified as one of the most important project deliverables.

According to CDC, besides “general information on the company – such as its products and services, the database illustrates the sustainability characteristics of selected suppliers.

“There are six sustainability dimensions that registered companies can highlight – and verify – in the database: quality standards and certifications; responsible supply chains; gender and inclusion; environmental sustainability; employee capacity building; and employee care,” it said.

The government is expected to approve the long-awaited new Law on Investment this year, which aims to modernise and increase the productivity of local industries and develop greater connectivity in the regional and global supply chain.
Cambodia introduced the Investment Law in 1994 and amended it in 2003.

In 1995, just one year after the law’s enactment, the total amount of investment approved by the CDC totalled some $2.3 billion.

By 2008, cumulative approved investment value had surged to $10.89 billion, of which the tourism sector accounted for $8.77 billion, services $1.29 billion and agriculture $106.73 million.

As of December 31, 2019, the cumulative value of approved investments had ballooned to $85.88 billion.

In 2019 alone, the CDC approved $9.40 billion worth of investment projects, of which mainland Chinese investors accounted for $2.75 billion. Hong Kong ranked second at $912.55 million, while Japan took third with $298.84 million.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen: Stop Russia sanctions

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said sanctions against Russia as a result of its military offensive in Ukraine should be stopped as they have produced no tangible results, and predicted that a global food crisis would ensue in 2023 as a consequence. Speaking to an audience at

  • Chinese tourists 2.0 – Coming anytime soon?

    Regional tourism is grappling with the absence of the prolific travellers and big spenders – the Chinese tourists. Cambodia, which has welcomed over two million Chinese tourists before Covid-19, is reeling from the economic loss despite being the first to fully open last November ‘To put

  • PM reflects on shoe throwing: Free speech or act of violence?

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on May 17 questioned whether a man who threw a shoe at him while he was in the US was exercising freedom of expression or if it was an act of hostility. Hun Sen was referring to an incident last week when

  • Siem Reap’s Angkor Botanical Garden opens

    The Angkor Botanical Garden was officially opened on May 19 with free entry for both local and international visitors for the first six weeks. The garden was established on a nearly 15ha plot of land in Siem Reap. “After the first six weeks, Angkor Botanical Garden

  • Prime Minister Hun Sen invites US president to attend summit in Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen personally invited US President Joe Biden to attend the ASEAN-US Summit which is set to be held in Cambodia in November, as ASEAN and the US are expected to upgrade their strategic partnership to a ‘comprehensive strategic partnership’, according to Prime

  • Pub Street on the cards for Battambang

    The Battambang Provincial Authority has announced that it is considering establishing a Pub Street in the area around the heritage buildings in Battambang town in a bid to attract more tourists. Battambang provincial governor Sok Lou told The Post that the establishment of a Pub