Agriculture, domestic tourism and SMEs are the catalysts to restore the economy

  Sok Chan / Khmer Times ,

Cambodia must boost the development of the domestic tourism, agriculture and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to restore its economy  post-COVID-19, according to Ky Sereyvath, Director of China Study Center of RAC.

Speaking at the roundtable discussion on, “What Cambodia should prepare to restore the economy post-COVID-19,” on Friday, Sereyvath said that Cambodia’s economy could  not recover until the government gives priority to boost domestic tourism, the processing of agricultural products to support tourism, and organic products, and the reduction of  production cost in the logistics sector and the development of the SMEs.

Last year more than 11 million local tourists were travelling across the country. Sereyvath has considered the domestic tourism as the key to pushing the economic growth. In addition, he said Cambodia has to diversify its agriculture production toward organic products which is in high demand in the market both locally and internationally and it is to supply the tourism sector.

Sereyvath added that SMEs has employed about 70 percent of the total industry sector, but Cambodia in  this sector, is lacking the technology and skilled labour well as competitive advantages.

The Cambodian economy may contract by 1.9 percent this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Prime Minister Hun Sen.

He was quoted in the budget planning session for 2021-2023, as saying that Cambodia has recorded a strong fall in demand from its trading partners. The prime minister is still optimistic that Cambodia’s economy will bounce back to 3.5 percent in 2021 due to the gradual recovery of the global economy and external demand.