Overview of the Cambodian Financial Market 18 – 25 Feb 2019


Finance and Banking, Financial Overview / Wednesday, March 6th, 2019
BANKS
19 Feb 2019

J Trust Group announced to provide banking service to customers in Cambodia through its acquisition of 55% stake in ANZ Royal Bank. The underscored plan is to provide digital banking to promote its financial services in the country.

“It is my aspiration to build on everything that has made this bank the most respected and trusted bank in Cambodia… J Trust is proud to say that we are making the single largest investment into technology by any bank in Cambodia, which will make the way you do business easier and faster,” said J Trust Managing Director Toru Myochin.

“The Bank will increase investments in human resources, enhance its distribution channels by including more branches, and simplify some of the process and procedures to make banking easier,” he added. (Phnom Penh Post Khmer and English website)

18 Feb 2019

FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS

AMK MFI partnered with the Credit Bureau of Cambodia (CBC) to provide Financial Health Check service and enhance customers’ access to their credit status at their branches. AMK customers can now check their creditworthiness through credit report issued at five AMK branches located in Phnom Penh, Kandal, Kampong Cham, and Siem Reap. The service will be expanded to all 150 AMK branches across the country before 2020.

Oeur Sothearoath, CEO of CBC, said credit reports allows CBC’s members to understand customers better and make the right decisions. The service allows the general public to know their creditworthiness, preparing them to face the loan application process, he said, adding that the service contributes to national financial and economic stability.

Last month, CBC also announced a similar partnership with ACLEDA Bank. As of January 2019, a total of 160 financial institutions, leasing companies, and rural credit institutions are members of CBC, with the bureau having 5 million people in its database. (Khmer Times newspaper and website, Phnom Penh Post Khmer newspaper)

OTHERS

22, 25 Feb 2019

Cambodia was included in the list of countries “highly vulnerable to money laundering” by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), following its “Mutual Evaluation Report” conducted in 2017. The report showed that Cambodian judicial system has high levels of corruption and that it lacks the will to investigate financial crimes.

“Both legal and illicit transactions, regardless of size, are frequently conducted outside of formal financial institutions and are difficult to monitor,” the report said, adding that “cash proceeds from crime are readily channeled into land, housing, luxury goods, and other forms of property without passing through the formal banking sector.”

The inclusion on the list will curtail international financial, investment and trade flows to and from Cambodia. The companies and individuals based in Cambodia could find it “tougher” to use the international financial system after FATF’s move.

Government spokesman Phay Siphan denied Cambodia was a money laundering haven and denounced the FATF report.

“We are based on the mechanism of law and cooperation with foreign partners to help monitor financial traffic. This is politically motivated report,” he said.

Chea Serey, NBC Director General, hasn’t yet commented on the report. (Reuters website, RFA website, RFI website, Khmer Times newspaper and website, Phnom Penh Post English newspaper and website)

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