Bilateral trade between Cambodia and the US in the first 10 months of 2021 was worth $7.571 billion, rising by 30.8 per cent year-on-year from $5.787 billion, according to data from the US Census Bureau (USCB) released on December 8.

In January-October, Cambodian exports to the US amounted to $7.2240 billion, a 30.9 per cent year-on-year uptick from $5.5169 billion, and imports clocked in at $346.6 million, a 28.37 per cent surge from $270 million in the same period last year.

Of note in October alone trade between the two countries totalled $1.091 billion, climbing by 47.5 per cent year-on-year from $740 million. Cambodian exports were the tune of $1.0482 billion, up 49.3 per cent from $702.0 million in October 2020, and imports were worth $43.1 million, rising by 14 per cent year-on-year from $37.8 million.

Hong Vanak, director of International Economics at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, told The Post on December 9 that although the Covid-19 epidemic continues to threaten travel and global economic growth, trade between the Kingdom and the US has not declined, but instead has risen sharply, especially in recent months.

Trade between the two countries will grow even faster with the resumption of global travel, he said, noting that Cambodian exports to the US are dominated by textile-based and travel products.

“The trade volume between the two countries will accelerate once the world can fully control the Covid-19 epidemic,” he said.

Vanak also attributed the upswing in bilateral trade to improved diplomatic relations and a hike in the share of Cambodian products that meet the needs and standards of US buyers.

Cambodia Chamber of Commerce vice-president Lim Heng said the US was the largest market for the Kingdom’s textile-related goods, with large quantities of garments, footwear and travel bags sold to the North American country.

He underlined that expanding trade volumes have greatly contributed to Cambodia’s economic growth, creating local employment opportunities and raising household incomes.

“This growth is expected to increase further, as Cambodia has recently introduced new investment laws that are very attractive for investment in Cambodia,” Heng said.

Cambodian exports to the US mainly comprise clothing, footwear, travel products, bicycles and electronic components, while major imports include cars, machinery and electronics.

The Kingdom attracted foreign direct investment (FDI) of $39 billion in the first half of 2021, with the US ranking as the 10th largest source, with total registered capital of $0.8 billion, the Council for the Development of Cambodia reported.

Bilateral trade between the Kingdom and the US amounted to $6.9213 billion in 2020, up 17.89 per cent from 2019, USCB figures show.

The export value of Cambodian goods was $6.5777 billion, up 22.79 per cent from the $5.3568 billion posted in 2019, while goods imported from the US were worth $343.6 million, down 33.15 per cent from $514 million.