Listed below are ten reasons why Cambodia appears to be on the mend in 2022.
Cambodia is emerging as one of the pandemic’s bright spots as the second year comes to a close. Here are eleven reasons why Cambodians should be hopeful about the new year starting in a few months.
Cambodia’s population is getting vaccinated.
After a rough start to the year with an outbreak in February that took months to resolve, Cambodian cities are reopening.
This is due in large part to government and private-sector vaccination programs. According to Our World In Data, as of August 23, Cambodia had finished 17.3 million doses, covering approximately half of the population. Vaccinations for children aged 12 to 17 have commenced, and the administration of a third booster dosage of AstraZeneca vaccine began on August 8. There are also 53 centenarians on the list of those who have received vaccinations!
Cambodia could reopen for tourists in 2022, and life will return to pre-pandemic levels.
Cambodia’s economy will recover.
The Cambodian government has spent a significant amount of money to prevent the economy from entering a deep recession. It has invested more than $1 billion, the most of which has gone to the Covid-19 Cash Transfer Programme (CCTP) to help disadvantaged families. So far, about 2.7 million people have profited from the CCTP.
The Asian Development Bank indicated a few months ago that Cambodia’s economy would rebound and then accelerate in 2022. The Manila-based agency revised that analysis in July, but made few adjustments to Cambodia’s economic prognosis.
Cambodia’s two main industries, garment (and footwear exports) and tourism, are likely to recover in the next few years. Meanwhile, the government’s long-term plans to diversify the country’s economic base may be bearing fruit, with significant real estate, industrial, and development activity in Sihanoukville, a deep-water port, and Siem Reap, the site of the famous Buddhist temple complex known worldwide as Angkor Wat.
The rise of China will benefit Cambodia.
Cambodia and China are inextricably tied as major trading partners.
At the end of July, the two countries agreed to raise bilateral trade by 25% to $10 billion within two years. Cambodian enterprises will be able to export more than 300 products thanks to a free trade pact inked with its northern neighbor. Similarly, Cambodia looks to benefit from membership in the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP), which would make it easier for Cambodian exports to find a market among the 15 Asia Pacific countries that signed on in 2020.
With China as the world’s top economic power, Chinese corporations are likely to establish a base in Cambodia for their ASEAN operations in the coming years. The Chinese economy has recovered (though unevenly) and is projected to anchor Asia’s growth.
International brands are flocking to Cambodia.
Long gone are the days when Cambodia was seen as a quaint backwater where it was difficult to find well-known brands such as Chili’s, Tealive, H&M, Long John Silver’s, Paris Baguette, Papa John’s, Maserati, and 7-Eleven.
This will undoubtedly promote tourism and make it simpler for Cambodia to attract smart foreigners interested in working in a dynamic and ambitious economy. Prepare to witness dramatic modernisation in Cambodia next year.
Cambodian real estate is heating up, with world-class projects in the works.
Ream City, a city-within-a-city project built on reclaimed ground near the airport, for example, was inaugurated earlier this year and will be one of Cambodia’s first big sustainable development projects. The project, an initiative of Canopy Sands Development, a member of the Prince Holding Group of companies, is expected to attract $16 billion in investment and will adhere to sustainable design principles such as environmental protection, resource recycling, environmentally friendly vehicles, and infrastructure development.
Both industrial and commercial expansion will help major cities such as Phnom Penh deal with their rapidly growing populations (the capital is set to double by the end of the decade).
This would stimulate the Cambodian property market, drawing investors, and there will be a need for real estate developments that cater to the needs of the expanding middle class.
Every industry has new and enhanced businesses.
Prince Holding Group, led by Neak Oknha Chen Zhi (Cambodia), is one of several businesses capitalizing on Cambodia’s expanding opportunities. Chen Zhi was recently named the 2021 International Business Awards Entrepreneur of the Year (Conglomerates). Over the last decade, Chen Zhi Prince Group has spent more than $2 billion in projects in real estate, consumer services, and financial services under Chen Zhi’s leadership.
This means that the economy will experience fresh energy and competition, which will increase job possibilities, provide customers with more options, and bring in the greatest products and services. To avoid falling behind, Cambodia’s leading corporations will need to step up their game and meet the rising expectations of Cambodians.
Cambodia will be in the center of attention next year as the ASEAN chair.
Next year, the epidemic will continue to have a significant impact on everyone’s lives in Southeast Asia. As a result, Cambodia can play an important role as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations’ 2022 chair (ASEAN). By successfully addressing the disease and demonstrating early indications of recovery, Cambodia will be able to share its lessons while also serving as a safe harbor (together with Singapore) for political and commercial leaders to make decisions that will help secure Southeast Asia’s eventual recovery.
Cambodia is expected to gain popularity in the area and beyond as the little country punches above its weight in regional and international issues.
Cambodia is slowly emerging from its war-torn, impoverished past.
While the effects of the Vietnam War are evident, and the country’s linkages to genocide continue to have an impact on daily life, there is optimism and hope for the future for the first time in decades.
The pandemic was a tiny setback to Cambodia’s two decades of steady progress, but the country handled it well and its people soldiered on. It should be noted that Cambodia’s poverty rate reduced from 53.2 percent in 2004 to 10 percent prior to the epidemic in 2019. While the epidemic will almost certainly exacerbate poverty, it will most likely be a brief reversal of fortune. The basic foundations for Cambodia’s recent economic success have not altered, and foreign investment is still pouring into the nation.
Cambodians are getting better educated.
According to the 2019-2023 Education Strategic Plan, the Ministry of Youth, Education, and Sports wants more than 16% of graduating students to enroll in and complete university by 2023, with a third studying science, technology, engineering, and medicine (STEM) courses.
That’s a really outstanding proportion of the graduating cohort for a country that couldn’t get its pupils to finish high school until recently. Improved job possibilities, along with improved city infrastructure, have caused an increasing number of Cambodians to abandon traditional pursuits such as farming and physical labor in favor of moving to cities, where they hunt for (and frequently find) well-paying positions.
The above-mentioned Prince Group has teamed with Caring For Cambodia, a leading education organization, to assist Cambodian students in gaining the skills and information required for post-pandemic job opportunities. Furthermore, it has established the Prince Horology Vocational Training Center, a watchmaking school built to international standards that recently reopened in order to diversify educational prospects in the country.
Garment employees are returning to work.
Finally, garment exports have resumed in concert with economic recoveries (and strong vaccination uptake) in key markets such as the United States and the European Union. According to the Clean Clothes Campaign, more than $117 million in earnings were lost during Cambodia’s shutdown in April and May. Many corporations that previously used garment workers in Myanmar are now establishing factories in Cambodia.
Because of these (and other) factors, we believe Cambodia will be able to recover quickly and will be one of the best economic surprises that managed to brave and astonish observers despite the COVID-19 pandemic.