Singapore Investors to Help Reboot Cambodia’s Economy

Cambodia holds huge potential for Singaporean investors, who can play a role in helping the nation’s economy return to pre-pandemic levels by ploughing funds into infrastructure and other dominant sectors.
Workers work on a real estate project in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/stringer
Workers work on a real estate project in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/stringer

Cambodia’s “return to earlier high levels of growth is anticipated,” predicts Singapore Ambassador to Cambodia, Teo Lay Cheng.

“Singapore is amongst Cambodia’s top five foreign investors,” said Teo at a recent event, “Discovering Cambodia – Insight into the Business Opportunities in Cambodia”.

The top diplomat of the Four Asian Tigers added that Singapore’s investments in Cambodia span sectors such as real estate, energy, trading and distribution, food/consumer, education, and finance.

David Totten, Managing Director at investment advisory firm Emerging Markets Consulting (EMC), told Kiripost this week,

“Cambodia needs a lot of infrastructure, and it’s a good long-term asset for the Singapore government and investors.”

He added, “Cambodia needs to move beyond the cheap factors of production to higher productivity. Singapore SMEs can play an important role in that.”

As Cambodia emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic following a successful vaccination campaign, David, who advises clients such as agritech platform Azaylla, added, “Temporary disruptions to global trade (COVID, commodity inflation) don’t impact Cambodia’s current advantages (relatively low cost, location, investment incentives etc). As the disruptions unwind, and assuming there aren’t any more, Cambodia will return to a short-term growth trajectory.”

Early last year, Cambodia launched an economic diplomacy strategy for 2021-2023 to promote trade, investment, tourism, and culture.

“Cambodian diplomats have done their part and intensified their efforts to implement and promote such economic diplomacy to bring more investment and tourists to Cambodia,” Sok Khoeun, Cambodia Ambassador to the Republic of Singapore, highlighted in his remarks.

Early this month, Azaylla received funding from Singapore investors, Insitor Partners, to further strengthen its supply chain and launch a business-to-business platform to benefit farmers and the food industry in Cambodia.

The Council for the Development of Cambodia has approved 127 of Singapore’s investment projects in the tourism, manufacturing, infrastructure and other sectors, with investment capital reaching about $1.53 billion.

In late 2021, Cambodia adopted its Investment Law that incentivizes investors to apply responsible business conduct and inclusive business approaches in their investment and business practices.

Organized in late July by CDC and Singapore Business Federation (SBF), SBF will facilitate more than 50 business-to-business meetings between participants and speakers to further discuss Singapore’s business interests and investment in Cambodia.

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