The construction sector in Cambodia is booming, with total investment in June this year up by nearly 2,000% over June 2015.
The actual figures are still quite low for the country of approximately 15 million people: investment reached $832.2m this month compared to just $39.7m last June, according to latest figures from the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction.
Ministry figures reveal there were a total of 277 projects as of the start of this month, translating to 1.5 million square meters, compared to 108 projects last June, with an equivalent of just over 128,000 square meters.
According to Phuoeng Sophean, secretary of state for the ministry, the hike in investment was due to better land management practices and the government’s strategy to attract foreign investment, reports Khmer Times.
"This is to support and promote a highly sustainable and inclusive economy in the country, with public and private sector cooperation," said Sophean.
As many high-rise buildings fill the Phnom Penh skyline, more and more foreign investment for future projects will flow in– Sear Chailin, CL Realty
Real estate executives expressed optimism about the prospects for Cambodia’s property sector.
Noun Rithy, general manager at the Bunna Reality Group, told the newspaper that the country’s political and economic stability were helping to fuel growth in the construction sector.
Rithy claimed that Japanese investors were particularly interested in Cambodia.
Sear Chailin, chief executive of CL Realty, said more high-rises would go up in the capital, Phnom Penh.
"As many high-rise buildings fill the Phnom Penh skyline, more and more foreign investment for future projects will flow in," he told Khmer Times, adding: "Right now, there is no problem with the demand for high-rise buildings and their rates of occupancy."
Real estate now accounts for more than 10% of gross domestic product (GDP), according to official figures.
Industry players are calling for enhanced legal protections and policies to protect property investments, the newspaper said.
Image: An aerial view of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, taken in 2005 (KY Geologist/Wikimedia Commons)