The Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) in August approved 23 investment proposals with a total investment of nearly $485.7 million.

The capital investments are in Kampong Speu (eight), Phnom Penh (six), three each in Kandal and Takeo, and one each in Pursat, Kampong Chhnang and Kampong Cham, and are expected to create 35,050 jobs.

The investment projects comprise cement factories, hotels, garment factories, footwear, bags, wirings, light bulbs, electrical equipment, packaging materials, plastic products and food processing.

Speaking to The Post on September 6, Hong Vanak, director of International Economics at the Royal Academy of Cambodia said the investment shows that Cambodia has a high potential for investment.

This indicates that the government and the private sector are working together to promote the country’s investment potential to investors and by making the destination more attractive.

He said the main reasons why Cambodia receives more investment are due to internal and external factors.

IInternal factors refer to the construction and subsequent implementation of an investment law system that is favourable to investors, development of transportation and irrigation systems, and human resource training.

External factors include the expansion of foreign markets, the signing of bilateral and multilateral free trade agreements, and preferential tariffs on imports to some countries, he explained.

“Seeing what Cambodia is doing right now, I am optimistic that it would be able to attract more domestic and international investors to invest directly.

“Direct investment not only helps create jobs for locals, but also enhances domestic production, particularly boosting exports to additional markets,” he said.

He also said the number of factories and enterprises in Cambodia would increase once the global economy improves.

Meanwhile, Federation of Associations for Small and Medium Enterprises of Cambodia (Fasmec) president Te Taingpor urged the government to lower electricity prices.

This is an important factor in attracting more investors to invest in Cambodia, he said, adding that reduced tariffs help to reduce costs, making Cambodian goods more competitive in international markets.

“Fuel and electricity prices are important factors in attracting foreign investors because they are important components for production, in addition to the cost of raw materials and labour. When fuel prices, including electricity prices, are stable and low, foreign investors would be drawn by the investment opportunities,” he said.

In the first half of 2023, the CDC approved 113 new projects and production expansion projects with a total investment of $1.1 billion that are expected to create 122,000 jobs.

Of the 113 investment projects, 102 are in industry, seven in agriculture and agro-industry, three in tourism and one in infrastructure development.