View the information below regarding the economy of Cambodia. The summary and statistics contains
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GDP (2002): $3.6 billion.
Per capita GDP (2002): $275.
Annual growth rate (2002): 4.5%.
Inflation (2002): 3.0%.
Natural resources: Timber, gemstones, some iron ore, manganese and phosphate, hydroelectric potential from the Mekong River.
Agriculture (37% of GDP, 2001): About 4,848,000 hectares (12 million acres) are unforested land; all are arable with irrigation, but 2.5 million hectares are cultivated. Products--rice, rubber, corn, meat, vegetables, dairy products, sugar, flour.
Industry (22% of GDP): Types--garment and shoe manufacturing, rice milling, tobacco, fisheries and fishing, wood and wood products, textiles, cement, some rubber production, paper and food processing.
Services (41% of GDP): Tourism, telecommunications, transportation, and construction.
Central government budget (2002): Revenues--$438 million; expenditure--$630 million; foreign financing--$268 million. Trade: Exports ($1.451 billion 2001)--garments, shoes, cigarettes, natural rubber, rice, pepper, wood, fish. Major partners--United States, EU, Singapore, Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Indonesia. Imports ($1.806 billion 2001)--fuels, cigarettes, vehicles, consumer goods, machinery. Major partners--United States, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand, EU, Malaysia, Indonesia.
Economic aid received: Pledges of $610 million in grants and concessional loans (2001), with disbursement rate of 77%. Major donors--Asian Development Bank (ADB), UN Development Program (UNDP), World Bank, International Monetary Fund, Australia, Canada, Denmark, the EU, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Sweden, Thailand, U.K., U.S.
Principle foreign commercial investors: Malaysia, Taiwan, U.S., China, Korea, Hong Kong, Singapore and Thailand.
Exchange rate (2002): 3,950 per U.S.$.
In spite of recent progress, the Cambodian economy continues to suffer from the legacy of decades of war and internal strife. Per capita income and education levels are low compared with most neighboring countries. Infrastructure remains inadequate. Most rural households depend on agriculture and its related subsectors. Manufacturing output is concentrated in the garment-manufacturing sector. This sector started to expand rapidly in the mid-1990s and now employs more than 200,000 workers but faces an uncertain future with the end of textile quotas at the end of 2004. The other main foreign currency earner is tourism. After several years of rapid growth, the tourism sector has slowed in 2002-03, mainly due to SARS-related fears. The service sector is heavily concentrated in trading activities and catering-related services.
Cambodia's real GDP grew at 6.3% in 2001 and 4.5% in 2002, with almost all of the growth coming from the garment sector. Inflation was less than 3%, and the national currency, the riel, is relatively stable. The economy is heavily dollarized; the dollar and riel can be used interchangeably. Cambodia remains heavily reliant on foreign assistance --in 2001, 58% of the central government budget depended on donor assistance. Cambodia has had trouble attracting foreign direct investment, due in part to the unreliable legal environment. New FDI levels fell steadily from 1999-2001. In 2002, FDI was a mere $135 million. The economy also has a poor track record in creating jobs in the formal sector, and the challenge will only become more daunting in the future since 40% of the population is under 15 years of age and large numbers will begin to enter the work force over the next 10 years.