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Cambodia Opposition Calls For Tariffs As Economic Crisis Mounts

Cambodia's opposition lawmakers are calling on the government to increase trade barriers and boost agricultural subsidies to cushion the impact of the global economic slowdown on the country's farmers.

Cambodia's opposition lawmakers are calling on the government to increase trade barriers and boost agricultural subsidies to cushion the impact of the global economic slowdown on the country's farmers. This is the first time parliamentarians have urged a protectionist response to the crisis. The opposition wants the government to increase tariffs on imported goods to cut the trade deficit with neighboring countries, citing the US$1.35 billion combined shortfall with Thailand and Vietnam.

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Cambodia To Set Up Own Standards System Soon

Cambodia is set to establish its own standards system that will match the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO).

Cambodia is set to establish its own standards system that will match the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO). The country has set up a standards institute to improve the quality of local food and water. The new Cambodian Standard (CS) will help local manufacturers gain access to external markets.

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Cambodian Stock Exchange Deal Signed

The Cambodian government signed an agreement to set up the country's first stock market yesterday with the Korea Exchange (KRX).

The Cambodian government signed an agreement to set up the country's first stock market yesterday with the Korea Exchange (KRX). The exchange will start small, with up to five companies listed. But authorities have no fixed date for the stock exchange launch. The original launch date was in September 2009, but the global economic slowdown forced authorities to delay until December at the earliest. The launch date will ultimately depend on the progress of publicity, training and infrastructure. The agreement gives the Ministry of Finance 55 percent of shares and KRX the remaining 45 percent.

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Cambodia Special Economic Zone Growth Slows

The global financial crisis has slowed down the development of Cambodia's special economic zone (SEZ).

The global financial crisis has slowed down the development of Cambodia's special economic zone (SEZs). The countries 21 licensed SEZs had trouble attracting investments even before the economic crisis hit. Many of these SEZs are in the middle of construction and are supposed to be done by 2015. But due to the current crisis and the lack of new investors, the completion of the project might have to be delayed. Out of the 21 licensed SEZs, only six are being actively developed.

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Cambodia Textile Imports Reach $1B

According to the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia, Cambodia's garment industry imported $1 billion in raw materials last year.

According to the Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia, Cambodia's garment industry imported $1 billion in raw materials last year. This led to calls for more local production of raw materials to cut costs and improve access to Western markets. 66 percent of garment components were imported from China and the rest came from Taiwan and South Korea.

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Cambodia: Vietnam Border Trade Up

The border provinces of Cambodia and Vietnam accounted for over $1.1 billion of the $1.6 billion total two-way trade between the two countries in 2008. Border trade has been on the rise since the signing of a bilateral memorandum of understanding on border trade facilitation. It is hoped that increased border trade will also improve the socioeconomic development of those areas.

The border provinces of Cambodia and Vietnam accounted for over $1.1 billion of the $1.6 billion total two-way trade between the two countries in 2008. Border trade has been on the rise since the signing of a bilateral memorandum of understanding on border trade facilitation. It is hoped that increased border trade will also improve the socioeconomic development of those areas.

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Cambodia's Garment Industry Unravels

Cambodia's Ministry of Commerce announced Tuesday that garment exports, the country's main source of foreign exchange, contracted in January to less than a third of their value, compared to the same period last year.

Cambodia's Ministry of Commerce announced Tuesday that garment exports, the country's main source of foreign exchange, contracted in January to less than a third of their value, compared to the same period last year. Garment exports earned only $70 million in revenue in January compared with $250 million in January 2008. The IMF projected last week that Cambodia's gross domestic product will shrink by 0.5 percent this year, largely due to falling demand for Cambodian garments. 62 percent of last year's revenue came from the US while 20 percent came from the EU. The Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia (GMAC) said that they are now only getting monthly orders from their Western customers, instead of getting them almost 12 months in advance, because of the economic downturn.

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Cambodia In Talks With Hungary for Loan

Hungary has discussed providing a $50 million loan to Cambodia to help build its infrastructure and promote agricultural productivity.

Hungary has discussed providing a $50 million loan to Cambodia to help build its infrastructure and promote agricultural productivity. Officials from both countries are currently in negotiations, but these types of loans usually are for 25 to 30 years with a zero interest rate. Hungarian officials also said that Hungary would write off half of the $433,000 that Cambodia still owes them from the 1980's. The other half will go towards a development fund for further cooperation.

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US Firms Discuss Investment In Cambodia

Executives from seven major American companies, including General Electric and Time Warner, have expressed their interests in investing in Cambodia.

Executives from seven major American companies, including General Electric and Time Warner, have expressed their interests in investing in Cambodia. The US-ASEAN Business Council and US Ambassador Carol Rodley met with Deputy Prime Minister Sok An to discuss investments in oil and gas, medicine, telecommunications, entertainment, IT and education. Information about Cambodia's investment potential will be distributed to more than 100 US firms.

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Cambodia: Credit Crunch Hits MFIs

Microfinance organizations said they are expecting slower growth and higher interest this year as funds from foreign lenders start dry up.

Microfinance organizations said they are expecting slower growth and higher interest this year as funds from foreign lenders start dry up. Foreign backers account for 80 percent of the capital of microfinance institutions (MFIs). With more foreign backers scaling back on their emerging market investments, MFIs are left with less capital to serve local demand. Moreover, interest rates, currently at two to three percent per month, could rise in response to loan restrictions by foreign creditors.

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Cambodian Government To Request $2.8b On Infrastructure Projects

Government officials are seeking approval to spend over $2.8 billion on public investment between 2010 and 2012.

Government officials are seeking approval to spend over $2.8 billion on public investment between 2010 and 2012. This comes after the government announced last week that it will spend $1 billion on public investment in 2009. That money would be spent mainly on transportation, public infrastructure and irrigation projects. They hope that public investment will create a friendlier environment for small businesses. Of the $2.8 billion total, about half will come from the government and the other half from development partners.

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