You are here
Brown Bag Lecture Series
Brown Bag Lecture Series
Impact of the Global Crisis on Cambodia’s Politics and Economy
Co-sponsor: WEAI as part of the “Global Financial Crisis” series
Kheang Un, Assistant Director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies at Northern Illinois University, spoke about the impact of the global financial crisis on the economics and politics of Cambodia. Although it was not greatly affected by the 1997 economic crisis in East Asia, over the past decade it has become integrated into the global and regional economy. As a result, the 2008 crisis has greatly affected Cambodia's economy, particularly its export sector and foreign-direct investment, with the garment, tourism, and construction industries feeling the greatest impact.
Professor Un illustrated how the Cambodian garment industry relies primarily on exports to the United States and Europe; its tourist industry relies on U.S., South Korean, and Japanese tourists; and its construction industry relies on Chinese and South Korean direct investment. All of these foreign markets were harmed by the financial crisis, and thus the effects were felt in the Cambodian market.
The Cambodian People's Party has recently become more popular electorally, despite a poor record on civil and political liberties, due to the party's ability to provide rapid and sustained economic growth until 2008. Its popularity also derives from its ability to preside over a neo-patrimonial state through provision of gifts and infrastructure from government officials, business tycoons, and multilateral and bilateral assistance. The recent economic downturn, then, may have affected the CPP's legitimacy. Un argues that this is unlikely because the government has been able, with assistance from multilateral institutions, to set up relief programs including material assistance and social and construction projects, most of which are carried out in neo-patrimonial fashion. Further, overseas development assistance, bilateral assistance and investment from China help to act as leverage against the impact of the global economic and financial downturn.
Professor Un believes the government seems to be moving from a patron-based system to a more pragmatic focus on service delivery and social safety. The financial crisis and Cambodia's increasing interconnections with the region and world have made such government reform even more necessary. The challenge is that the government has to strengthen its revenue collection which has been affected by widespread corruption.
APEC Study Center at Columbia University
Columbia University, 3022 Broadway
2M-9 Uris Hall
New York, NY 10027-7004
The Curl Ideas to wrap your mind around
Attendance at Reunion 2015 Sets New Record
A record-breaking 2,500 alumni, guests, faculty and staff members, and students attended this year’s Reunion Weekend, which took place April 17–19.Read More
WHEN IT COMES TO RETAINING YOUR CUSTOMERS, SOMETIMES IT’S BEST TO LEAVE THEM ALONE
New research from Columbia Business School shows that offering customers a chance to switch to better plans may not always be the right customer-retention strategyRead More
Damon Phillips to Serve as Co-Director of Tamer Center
In his new role, Professor Phillips will lead research and curriculum, as well as develop connections and support, for the Tamer Center.Read More
The Beginning of a Beautiful Friendship
Your former classmate might be the perfect business partner.Read More
Your Secrets Are Killing Your Productivity
New research from Columbia Business School finds the burden of secrecy akin to carrying excess physical weightRead More
How India Can Build Infrastructure
Rajiv Lall, executive chairman of the Infrastructure Development Corp. in India, says public/private partnerships won’t cut it.Read More
Eight Controversial Practices in the New Stock Market
New Research from Columbia Business School Makes Recommendations on How Regulators Should Intervene—If At AllRead More
Executive in Residence Jack Mitchell: Hug Your Customers
At Mitchells Family of Stores, a three-generation family clothing business, knowing the customer is the modus operandi.Read More
The New CFO
CFOs like Tracey Travis ’86 of Estée Lauder do radically different jobs today than they did just 10 years ago.Read More