Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - World Bank expects Cambodian economy to grow higher this year

World Bank expects Cambodian economy to grow higher this year

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
World Bank Country Manager for Cambodia Inguna Dobraja said on Wednesday that Cambodia needs to develop its physical and human capital to attain higher income status in the long term. POST STAFF

World Bank expects Cambodian economy to grow higher this year

The World Bank on Wednesday released its latest edition of Cambodia’s economic outlook, expecting that the Kingdom’s economy will grow higher this year compared to last year.

The World Bank Cambodia Economic Update, a biannual report that provides up-to-date information on short- and medium-term macroeconomic developments, said Cambodia’s economic growth rate will reach 7.1 per cent this year.

The figure is slightly higher than the seven per cent recorded last year. The growth is driven primarily by domestic consumption and exports, which are largely supported by strong demand in the US and the EU.

Despite the positive outlook, World Bank economists warned of external risks, which include the potential withdrawal of Everything But Arms preferences for Cambodia, and the unpredictable spill-over effects of the US-China trade dispute.

Internally, risks related to the financial sector should also be considered as the Kingdom continues to grow with large exposure to the construction and real estate sectors.

“Priorities for Cambodia include safeguarding the health of the financial sector, while building reserves, strengthening competitiveness, and preventing a rapid real exchange rate appreciation, given the recent surge in imports,” said World Bank senior economist for Cambodia Sodeth Ly.

The World Bank in 2016 revised the status of Cambodia’s economy, moving it up a rung from the low-income bracket into lower-middle income territory after its 2015 gross national income (GNI) per capita surpassed the $1,026 threshold to reach $1,070.

With economic growth averaging seven per cent annually, the Cambodian government expects the country to reach upper-middle-income status by 2030 and become a high-income nation in 2050.

To reach the next tier – the upper-middle income status – the Kingdom’s GNI per capita must reach $3,896, which is more than three times the current amount.

While long-term outlooks remain positive, World Bank Country Manager for Cambodia Inguna Dobraja said on Wednesday that Cambodia needs to develop its physical and human capital to attain higher income status in the long term.

“To achieve its upper middle-income country aspirations, Cambodia needs to increase its investment in human capital and infrastructure and adopt reforms that enable sustained and inclusive growth,” she said.

“Mobilising significant domestic savings to boost investment is critical to attaining what high-performing Asian economies have achieved.”

The World Bank report also calls for further bridging of the infrastructure deficit to absorb rising foreign direct investments in manufacturing and agro-processing, as well as continued improvements to the business environment.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hungarian exposes 90 to Covid in Siem Reap

    The Ministry of Health has discovered 90 people who have been exposed directly or indirectly to a Hungarian man infected with Covid-19. They all are required to quarantine at home and the hospital. The ministry is searching for other affected people. Among the 90, one is the

  • PM warns of ‘new Cold War’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said the possibility of a so-called new Cold War has become a significant concern and that all countries have to reject outright, any attempt to allow history to tragically repeat itself. He made the remarks in a speech during 75th Session

  • PM: West unfair to Cambodia

    Prime Minister Hun Sen released a message celebrating the International Day of Peace on Monday, saying that some major powers and western countries had been systemically cooperating to put political pressure on Cambodia as they did in the 1970s and 1980s. Hun Sen said pressuring

  • ‘Bad news is an investor’s best friend’ – unlocking investment potential in Cambodia

    It is time to shop. Economic woes provide good pickings for investors if they know where to look The poem If, written by English Nobel laureate poet and novelist Rudyard Kipling for his son circa 1895, is widely perceived as fatherly advice for John who would

  • PM requests Russia’s Covid vaccine

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that Russia provide Cambodia with its Covid-19 vaccine after the former announced it planned on mass vaccinating its population next month. The request came on Thursday through the prime minister’s Facebook page as he met with Anatoly Borovik,

  • Cambodia, CRF win rice battle in EU Court

    The European General Court has rejected the European Commission’s (EC) request to reject a complaint submitted by Cambodia and the Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF) regarding the EU’s reintroduction of tariffs on Indica rice exports from Cambodia. A court order uploaded to the European