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NEWS UPDATES Asean Affairs     13 October  2011                    

FDI rises 250 percent in Cambodia

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Foreign direct investment in Cambodia soared 250 percent year-on-year through August even despite the West’s economic woes, Deputy Prime Minister Sok An said yesterday.

A total of 87 projects worth US$5.6 billion were approved by the Council for the Development of Cambodia during the first eight months of the year, he said yesterday.

“The economy is still seeing robust growth due to strong foreign direct investment in key sectors,” he said, pointing to construction and tourism, real estate, banking and product exports.

According to CDC statistics, investment in four tourism projects hit $2.445 billion, 43.6 percent of the total figure in the first eight months of this year, compared to $17.7 million in the same period of 2010.

CDC statistics for total FDI in 2010 showed approved projects were worth some $2.69 billion, a steep decline from 2009’s $5.86 billion.

Minister of Tourism Thong Khon said that the re-emergence of foreign tourists will continue to increase, further boosting the national economy.

“We saw investment in coastal areas increase dramatically this year, second only to the cultural and historical sights of Angkor Wat. We expect to gain much more profit from tourism in the coming years.”

He added that the sector’s growth will pave the way for additional employment opportunities in the Kingdom.

ACLEDA Bank CEO and president In Channy told the Post yesterday the decline of foreign investment in the Kingdom during last year was the result of a hangover from the global financial crisis in the previous year.

“Last year we saw the delayed effects from 2009, with a reduction in exports to the US and EU, while the property sector also came to a standstill,” he said.

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This year in Thailand-what next?

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By David Swartzentruber      

It is commonplace in journalism to write two types of articles at the transition point between the year that has passed and the New Year. As this writer qualifies as an “old hand” in observing Thailand with a track record dating back 14 years, it is time take a shot at what may unfold in Thailand in 2011.

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