Archive for the ‘Government’ Category

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H.E. Sok Siphanna talks about the potential of rice trade

H.E. Sok Siphanna talks about the potential of rice trade

(in Khmer language)

Part 1:

Part 2:

Posted November 13, 2010 by viCheth

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Cambodia, China announce 1.6billion dollar deal: officials

In Economy,Foreign Aid,Government on November 4, 2010 by viCheth

Thursday, November 04, 2010
AFP

Hun Sen toasting Wu Bangguo (AFP)

China’s Wu Bangguo (L) toasts with Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen

PHNOM PENH — China will inject 1.6 billion dollars into Cambodian infrastructure over five years, officials said Thursday, just days after the US urged the country not to become too dependent on the Asian giant.

"Within the next five years, Cambodia and China will have 23 co-operation projects," government spokesman Khieu Kanharith told reporters after a meeting between China’s top legislator Wu Bangguo and the Cambodian Prime Minister, Hun Sen.

Hydropower dams, mining projects, bridges and railway linkswould be among the initiatives funded by China between 2010 and 2015, he added.

At their meeting in Phnom Pehn, Wu and Hun Sen witnessed the signing of 16 deals, including a loan agreement arranged by the Bank of China that will see Cambodia’s largest mobile operator CamGSM borrow over 590 million dollars.

China also plans to help Cambodia build a new railway to neighbouring Vietnam, providing one of the last missing links for a pan-Asian network that would connect Singapore with China’s Kunming by train, according to the spokesman.

He said Wu also promised to boost Chinese direct investment in the kingdom, which so far this year stands at 610 million dollars.

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Two Voices of the World Bank. Which One Says What? – Thursday, 9.9.2010

In Country Situation,Economy,Government on September 14, 2010 by viCheth

On 8 and on 9 September 2010, two high level statements from the World Bank were reported. Here follow some excerpts:

The Phnom Penh Post reported:

Chief Economist Meets Hun Sen, Praises Cambodia

The Chief Economist of the World Bank Justin Yifu Lin praised Cambodia for its economic development at a meeting with Prime Minister Hun Sen yesterday.

“Despite the world facing the financial crisis, Cambodia’s GDP is still positive,” Lin was quoted by Eang Sophalleth, spokesman for Hun Sen, as saying during a courtesy call to the Council of Ministers office in Phnom Penh.

The World Bank estimates that gross domestic product will rise 4.4 percent this year.

The spokesman said that Lin, who is also senior vice president of the World Bank, congratulated the premiere on the Kingdom’s development.

In response, Hun Sen highlighted that the government was trying to improve the economy through agricultural enhancements, physical and telecommunications infrastructure improvements, and energy and human resource development…

The Cambodia Daily reported one day later:

Economic Concessions Endanger Rights of Poor, World Bank Says

The World Bank on Tuesday warned that large-scale farmland purchases posed a threat to rights of farmers in Cambodia and elsewhere in the world, a conclusion that follows criticism by human rights workers of Cambodia’s economic land concessions to private firms.

Big land acquisitions by investors raise “a real concern about the ability of local institutions to protect vulnerable groups from losing land on which they have legitimate, if not formally recognized claims,” the World Bank said in a new report on growing global demand for farmland.

“The veil of secrecy that often surrounds these land deals must be lifted so poor people don’t ultimately pay the heavy price of losing their land,” World Bank Managing Director Ngozi Okonji-Iweala said in a statement.

Is one statement true, and the other is not? No. Both are true. The question is, however, who is looking at what, and for whose benefit. In macroeconomic terms, Cambodia is doing well – says the Chief Economist of the World Bank.

This does not lead to poverty alleviation helping a large number of Cambodian people, says the Managing Director of the World Bank.

The difference depends on the viewpoint. And depending on whether the interest is directed to overall finance figures of the country, or on the economic situation of many people in the rural countryside, different realities are seen.

The Managing Director of the World Bank sees a possible solution: “The veil of secrecy that often surrounds these land deals must be lifted so poor people don’t ultimately pay the heavy price of losing their land.” Worth to consider. Worth to do. Worth to observe if this is happening.

The Mirror, Vol. 14, No. 681, September 9th, 2010

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Kingdom ranks 109th for business climate

Kingdom ranks 109th for business climate

Phnom Penh Post, FRIDAY, 10 SEPTEMBER 2010 15:01 CATHERINE JAMES

CAMBODIA’S business environment competitiveness has marginally improved, according to the World Economic Forum’s ranking of 139 countries, but the Kingdom continues to lag far behind its regional neighbours.

The forum’s annual competitiveness study scores 110 factors across 12 areas affecting an economy’s business climate: institutions, infrastructure, macroeconomic environment, health, education, goods and labour market efficiency, financial market development, technological readiness, market size, business sophistication, and innovation.

Cambodia, which was ranked 109th, was the worst performer of the 10 countries in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, excluding Laos and Myanmar which were not included in the survey.

This year’s rank is one better than last year’s 110th position.

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Posted September 14, 2010 by viCheth

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Globalization with weak Institutions: Cambodia

Hal Hill, Jayant Menon, Chan Sophal

The charming riverside capital of Phnom Penh, home to about 1.5 million inhabitants, has seen a lot in its turbulent history. But nothing arguably is on the scale of its first sky-scraper, the 42-floor ‘Golden Tower’ now nearing completion, not to mention the university and bank complexes mushrooming throughout this ancient city.
This changing physical landscape reflects broader developments in the country, which has been experiencing rapid economic growth – the sixth fastest in the world in the decade to 2007 – for the first time in its history. More than 2 million tourists now visit this country of 14 million, a 20-fold increase over the figure in the early 1990s. The Cambodian people have better nutrition and access to education and health services than ever before. Since the cessation of hostilities almost two decades ago, life expectancy has risen by almost a decade and infant mortality has fallen significantly.
The macro-economy is stable, with inflation under control, underpinned by very high levels of dollarization, currently about 90%. Debt service is almost negligible, and public debt has fallen sharply, to about one-quarter of GDP.
The economy is highly open, with exports plus imports equivalent to more than 120% of GDP. The investment climate is welcoming, with generous tax incentives and low tariffs. Aid flows are very large, currently almost $1.1 billion in a $10 billion economy. The country’s openness meant that growth dried up in 2009 as the global financial crisis hit. But the economy is now rebounding.

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Posted July 8, 2010 by viCheth

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Cambodia Still Unable to ‘De-Dollarize’

Ros Sothea, VOA Khmer, Phnom Penh Wednesday, 07 July 2010

After nearly a decade of government efforts to de-dollarize its economy, Cambodia remains one of the most heavily dollarized economies in the world.
The greenback is used in nearly 90 percent of transactions, alongside the riel, and experts say this won’t change without more administrative reform.
Meanwhile, people’s trust in the riel has been shaken by recent inflation, making the dollar, which was introduced during the UN’s rebuilding efforts, more attractive.
There are of course benefits to dollarization. It attracts foreign investment, stabilizes the exchange rate and prevents devaluation of the riel while promoting growth in the banking sector.
But dollarization also undermines monetary policies conducted by the central bank, limiting its role as a lender of last resort and creating losses in revenue from the printing and issuing of new currency.
Such losses cost the government between $20 million and $90 million annually.
Overall, many regional experts warn against continued dollarization.

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Posted July 8, 2010 by viCheth

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Cambodia govt, unions agree to 9% rise in garment wages

In Economy,Government,Textile on July 8, 2010 by viCheth

PHNOM PENH, July 8 (Reuters) – Cambodia’s government and several unions agreed on Thursday to a 9-percent minimum wage rise for garment workers but the industry’s biggest unions said their demands were not met and a strike was still possible.
Garment workers have threatened a nationwide strike in Cambodia, where minimum wages are among the world’s lowest, if pay levels fail to rise sharply in an industry vital to the impoverished country’s nascent economic recovery.
Labor Minister Vong Sauth said wages would rise from $56 a month to $61from Oct. 1 under a new four-year agreement that would be strictly enforced.

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