SBF led business mission to Cambodia to explore business opportunities
29 July 2014 [Singapore] - Singapore SMEs' growth expectations are weak as the economy undergoes restructuring.
The Singapore Business Federation (SBF), supported by International Enterprise (IE) Singapore, led a 18-member delegation of 14 companies to Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, Cambodia, from 21 to 25 July 2014. This mission exposed Singapore companies to new business opportunities and useful networking contacts in the two cities, as well as advanced business-to-business relations between both countries.
Mr Teo Siong Seng, Chairman of SBF, said "Cambodia is enjoying healthy economic growth, driven by stronger exports, robust agricultural production and growing services. Currently, major foreign direct investments are made in the construction, infrastructure, power generation, oil and gas and manufacturing sectors. It is timely for Singapore companies to look at this market for the business opportunities available."
The SBF delegation consisted of senior business representatives from the road construction, residential construction, interior design, property development, hospitality management, hotel investments, foodservice supply, technology, software design and manufacturing, high precision manufacturing, distribution, mechanical and electrical, venture capital, insurance broking, shipping and logistics sectors. Seven companies out of 14 companies had definite business plans for Cambodia.
The delegation met with port operators, industrial manufacturers, as well as representatives from the agro-industrial, real estate, construction and designing, logistics, mechanical and electrical, information technology, food and beverages, hospitality, and business consultancy services sectors. Some 40 business leads were obtained by the delegates.
The delegation was led by SBF Honorary Treasurer Mr Lawrence Leow, who is also Chairman/CEO of Crescendas Group. Mr Leow said "Cambodia has emerged as a potential country of investment for Singapore companies in recent years. Singapore is one of Cambodia's major investors with investments in logistics, textiles and garments, tourism and hospitality, property development and agriculture. Through this mission, we hope our delegates can understand more about the latest developments in Cambodia and to explore more business opportunities in the diverse sectors."
According to the SBF National Business Survey 2013/2014, Cambodia was ranked the 7th most desirable market for Singapore companies to venture to, ahead of Thailand and the Philippines. Myanmar was the top market of interest, followed by Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, China and India in 6th position. The mission was well-timed with deepening business and commercial interests of our Singapore companies in Cambodia.
A key highlight of this mission was the Business Networking Lunch with Singapore Club Cambodia on 21 July 2014 involving some 50 Singapore businessmen living in Cambodia. The Guest-of-Honour for the lunch reception was Mr S. Iswaran, Minister, Prime Minister's Office, Second Minister for Home Affairs and Second Minister for Trade and Industry, Singapore.
The business delegation also met with the Council for the Development of Cambodia, Cambodia Chamber of Commerce, and Siem Reap Chamber of Commerce and the Young Entrepreneurs Association of Cambodia. A visit to the Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone was arranged. These meetings had also helped the delegates understand the impact of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015 on Cambodian businesses and how Singapore companies can benefit from AEC 2015 in Cambodia.