The Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) approved 26 private ventures in September, totalling an investment of $256.65 million, projected to create 27,262 jobs.

Nine of the projects are located in the special economic zones (SEZs) of Preah Sihanouk and Svay Rieng provinces. The remaining initiatives are scattered across various regions including Phnom Penh and the provinces of Kampong Speu, Preah Sihanouk, Takeo, Kratie, Kampong Cham and Kandal. Notable investments include the development of a substation, a 230 kV transmission line from Kampong Cham to Kratie and the construction of a steel plant in Preah Sihanouk.

The range of endeavours approved by the CDC spans multiple sectors, encompassing electricity distribution networks, light bulbs, wires, steel, garments, footwear, bags, animal feed, furniture, packaging materials and daily necessities.

Lim Heng, vice-president of the Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC), said the influx of new investments underlines the Kingdom’s growing potential to attract both domestic and international investors.

“This acquisition of direct investments is a source of pride for the country and will not only generate job opportunities and bolster national economic growth but also diminish [our] dependency on imports to satisfy local demand,” Heng told The Post, also highlighting the diversified nature of recent projects and emphasising their increased technological focus.

Speaking on the upcoming Government-Private Sector Forum scheduled for November, where Prime Minister Hun Manet is set to preside, Heng expressed optimism about attracting even more local and international investors post-forum.

Keo Mom, CEO of Ly Ly Food Industry Co Ltd, stressed the importance of competitive electricity pricing in attracting investments.

“Lower electricity costs enhance the global competitiveness of goods. Before committing to an investment, foreign investors invariably enquire about the availability and pricing of electricity,” she said, underlining the correlation between electricity costs and overall production costs.

In the first half of 2023, the CDC approved 113 new and expanded projects with an overall investment of $1.1 billion, poised to generate 122,000 jobs. A sectoral breakdown of these investments reveals 102 in industry, seven in agriculture and agro-industry, three in tourism and one in infrastructure.