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Top 10 Reasons to Start a Business in Cambodia

Posted by IPS Commercial on February 16, 2022

Compared to many countries in Southeast Asia, Cambodia is one of the best places to set up shop. The cost of business ownership is very low and the ease with which you can start your operations is very smooth.

There are many reasons why the country is an attractive place to set up a business.

1. The tourism sector has grown very fast. Tourist visits had quadrupled in the last 5 years compared to the first 5 years of this decade. In 2018 alone (a pre-Covid year), more than 6 Million international travelers had arrived in the country. Hotels and similar accommodations have recorded roughly 75% occupancy rate with an average 7 days length of stay.

2. Cambodia is an expat haven. A lot of foreigners choose to stay here long term either to work or retire. It is declared as one of the cheapest places to retire in Asia. The low cost of living, the lush countryside, plenty of entertainment and recreational activities, and the ease of transportation are some of the reasons why it is an ideal place to call home.

3. It is a Dollar Economy. Cambodian Riel is the national currency but US Dollars is widely used. All commercial and business establishments generally accept USD.

4. Strong Market Opportunities. As always, the first year of operating a business is the most critical. If you can make it through the first 12 months, a well-run business can expect to break even on the initial investment within 3 years.

5. Sustained Economic Growth. Both the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the World Bank reported a sustained average 7% GDP growth rate from 1995-2018. It is the 6th fastest growing country in the world. It is also the 2nd in Southeast Asia, coming in very close to Myanmar.

6. Ease of Setting up the Business. Cambodia has a very straight-forward Freehold Business Ownership laws. The long-term lease policies are very attractive. Foreigners cannot own land and will need to use other forms of ownership, but, you can lease land for 99 years and set-up a permanent base of operations.

7. Great Location in Southeast Asia. The country is located in the middle of Thailand and Vietnam. Other parts of SEA are easily accessible by a few hours bus or plane ride. Tourists tend to pass thru Cambodia for a few days before moving on to their next Asian destination. Your business has access to approximately 10% of the population in the whole SEA region.

8. Least Developed Country Status and Privileges. As a member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and with an assigned LDC status, Cambodia enjoys access to ASEAN free trade. It enjoys tariff-free and       preferential access to North America and European Union countries. Import and Export businesses can easily flourish in this setting.

9. Welcoming attitude towards Investors. Cambodia is very open to investors and visitors. Compared to other less-developed countries, locals tend to accept foreigners easier and with more gusto.

10. Belt and Road Initiative. China’s One Belt, One Road (OBOR) initiative includes Cambodia as one of the 65 countries lined up to enhance global and international trading and strengthen bilateral ties between countries across Asia, Middle East, Europe and Africa. This initiative is in line with the  development of its deep sea port, railways, roads, and flights around the country and Asia growing yearly.

Now is the best time to set-up your own business

Business ownership in Cambodia is easy and hassle-free. Have your investment capital ready, find a good real estate company to help you set up shop and everything flows through from there.

Once the location for your business is found and the appropriate lease agreements are signed, you can start your business right away. Acquiring a real estate space is cheap, government mandates for investors are relatively lax and there are enough young and skilled workers for any type of job. You will not find any other country easier to set-up a business like Cambodia.


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