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Cambodia: Staff Report for the 2015 Article IV Consultation—Informational Annex

International Monetary Fund. Asia and Pacific Dept
Published Date:
November 2015
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Fund Relations

(As of August 31, 2015)

Membership Status

Joined December 31, 1969; accepted the obligations under Article VIII, Sections 2, 3, and 4 on January 1, 2002.

General Resources Account:

SDR MillionPercent Quota
Fund holdings of currency (Exchange Rate)87.50100.0
Reserve Tranche Position0.000.00

SDR Department:

SDR MillionPercent Allocation
Net cumulative allocation83.92100.00
Outstanding Purchases and Loans: None Latest Financial Arrangements:
Amount ApprovedAmount Drawn
TypeDate of ArrangementExpiration Date(SDR Million)(SDR Million)
ECF 1/Oct. 22, 1999Feb. 28, 200358.5058.50
ECF 1/May 06, 1994Aug. 31, 199784.0042.00

Formerly PRGF

Formerly PRGF

Projected Payments to the Fund2/

(SDR Million; based on existing use of resources and present holdings of SDRs):


Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative

As part of the Multilateral Debt Relief Initiative (MDRI), the IMF Executive Board on January 5, 2006, approved relief on 100 percent of debt incurred by Cambodia to the IMF before January 1, 2005. This resulted in the forgiving of all of Cambodia’s outstanding debt to the IMF, a total of SDR 56.8 million (about US$82 million). The authorities intend to spend the resources over a number of years, initially on rural irrigation projects. The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) transferred the full MDRI proceeds to the Ministry of Economy and Finance effective March 2006.

Safeguards Assessment

A voluntary safeguards assessment of the NBC was completed in January 2010 at the request of the authorities, which updated the previous March 2004 voluntary assessment. The update assessment found that the NBC had taken steps to strengthen aspects of its safeguards framework; however, important recommendations proposed in 2004 were still outstanding, and some new risks had emerged in the area of external audit.

Exchange Rate Arrangement and Payments System

Cambodia’s exchange regime is classified as stabilized. The de jure regime is a managed float. The official exchange rate, which is expressed in riels per U.S. dollar, applies to all official external transactions conducted by the central government and state enterprises, and is used for accounting purposes by the NBC. It is determined by the foreign exchange market, with the official rate adjusted to be within 1 percent of the market rate on a daily basis.

Cambodia accepted the obligations of Article VIII, Sections 2, 3, and 4 on January 1, 2002. Cambodia maintains an exchange system that is free of restrictions on the making of payments and transfers for current international transactions.

Article IV Consultation

Cambodia is on the standard 12-month Article IV consultation cycle. The last Article IV consultation discussions were held in Phnom Penh during November 4–15, 2013. The Executive Board approved the staff report (IMF Country Report 14/33) on January 27, 2014.

Financial Sector Assessment Program (FSAP)

The joint IMF-World Bank FSAP mission took place in March 2010 and the assessment was completed in October 2010.

Technical Assistance

Technical assistance is currently focused on bank supervision, monetary operations, public financial management, tax and customs administration, macro-fiscal and revenue forecasting, financial sector supervision, and macro-financial statistics. Delivery is through a resident advisor at the NBC, peripatetic experts, and short-term visits from headquarters.

Resident Representative

The IMF Resident Representative in Phnom Penh (Ms. Yong Sarah Zhou) was appointed in July 2015. Mr. Faisal Ahmed, former Resident Representative, assumed the post for the Cambodian IMF office from July 2011 to July 2015.

Imf-World Bank Collaboration

(July 2015)

The Bank and the IMF country teams for Cambodia, led by Mr. Mathew Verghis (Practice Manager GMFDR) and Ms. Jain-Chandra (IMF Mission Chief for Cambodia), maintain a close working relationship and have an active dialogue on a range of macroeconomic and structural issues.

Recent key areas of cooperation and coordination include:

  • Macroeconomic policy advice to the authorities. The IMF and the World Bank staffs have consulted each other on key macroeconomic policy messages to the authorities to avoid sending conflicting messages. Bank staff share and discuss the review of macroeconomic developments and country pages. IMF staff share policy notes and analytical background notes related to Article IV consultation missions.

  • Financial sector reform and FSAP. The World Bank and the IMF teams have worked closely together while undertaking the 2010 FSAP. In line with the FSAP recommendations, technical assistance missions are now ongoing and close coordination between the IMF and the World Bank continues.

  • Public financial management and tax and customs administration reform. Both institutions are working closely together under the Public Financial Management Reform Program (PFMRP) including 2014-18 revenue mobilization strategy as well as tax and customs administration reform. Both teams are members of the Development Partner Committee (DPC) of the PFMRP, a coordination mechanism for all Development Partners’ support for the PFMRP under a Sector Wide Approach, and share information as much as possible on the work done in this area. The partial launch of the FMIS on July 20, 2015 marks a major milestone towards the full implementation of a comprehensive transaction processing, improved financial control, and more transparent and timely financial report generation facility.

  • Trade Facilitation and private sector development. Both institutions are providing technical supports to GDCE/MEF on customs and border reform, regulatory reform, and streamlined import and export procedures. Under WBG Trade Related-Assistance in Cambodia program (TRAC) contributed to better logistics, non-tariff measure (NTM), trade repository, investment incentive policy, and making it easier for exporters to integrate into regional production networks. Under the WBG Trade Facilitation Facility (TFF) supported the GDCE/MEF to develop Cambodia National Single Window (CNSW) blueprint. Trade Development Support Program (TDSP) continues to support the expansion of ASYCUDA to 51 customs checkpoints in different geography, MAFF on SPS automation system, and MOC on certification of country origin automation, trade-marks registration system, and business registration automation system. Cambodia gained ranking 46 places in the Logistics Performance Indicators (LPI) between 2010–14 and abolished unnecessary certificates of origin (CO) required by the importing countries.

  • Article IV consultations. IMF Article IV consultations regularly share their macroeconomic data with the World Bank and hold working sessions to try and reconcile macroeconomic data sets. The collaboration is closest on the debt sustainability analysis, a joint product, but extends more broadly into other areas of the consultation as well. World Bank staff are also invited to and do participate in some of the key meetings. The IMF also participated in some of the WB capacity building TA missions on contingent liabilities. Both institutions are considering using the TA mission findings to further strengthen the DSA analysis.

  • Structural reforms. The IMF staff and the World Bank teams have worked together to share views on a range of other issues, including structural reforms for improving investment climate, economic diversification, customs modernization, and rural development.

Based on the above partnership, the World Bank and the IMF share a common view about Cambodia’s macroeconomic and structural reform priorities. These include:

  • Sustaining growth. Growth remains robust although there are signs of deceleration. While decelerating, the garment sector together with construction, and services, in particular finance and real estate, continues to propel growth. Overall macroeconomic management remains appropriate but there are signs of weaknesses in the areas of productivity and competitiveness. Fiscal consolidation continues with further improvements in revenue collection resulting from enhanced administration. Sustaining growth would require continued fiscal consolidation and prudent management of the banking sector risks. Improving the business climate, reducing infrastructure, energy, and skills bottlenecks, promoting private sector development and economic diversification, improving governance and the delivery of public services and supporting rural development continue to be essential to promote self-sustaining and inclusive growth.

  • Managing public finances and debt. Fiscal policy remains the main instrument for macroeconomic management given high dollarization. Prudent fiscal management is, therefore, critical and needs to be underpinned by improved revenue collection, prioritized spending, and better monitoring of contingent liabilities, including through the budgetary and public debt management framework and further progress in budgetary transparency.

  • Safeguarding financial system stability and improving the effectiveness of monetary policy. Implementing the key recommendations of the 2010 FSAP remains critical to safeguarding financial stability. These include implementing a moratorium on new bank licenses, strengthening coordinated supervision, developing the foreign exchange market, and improving the supervisory capacity. Financial stability risks from the buoyant real estate markets need to be managed through strengthened supervision and improved data collection. Developing an interbank market remains a necessary step for a transition to more effective and market based monetary policy operations.

  • Improving governance. Both the World Bank and IMF have stressed the critical role of governance in improving the quality of service delivery and fostering private sector development, which is the engine of growth.

The teams are committed to continue the close cooperation going forward. The table below details the specific activities planned by the two country teams over the next 12-month period along with their expected deliveries.

Cambodia: Joint Managerial Action Plan, 2015–16
TitleProductsProvisional and Actual Timing of MissionsExpected and Actual Delivery Date
A. MutualInformation onRelevantWorkPrograms
The World Bank’s Work program in the next 12 MonthsMacroeconomic monitoring
  • Semi-annual updates

  • Cambodia Economic Update

OngoingOnce every six months: tentatively in April and Oct
Financial sector
  • FSAP follow-up technical assistance to implement IFRS roadmap for accounting and auditing practices in financial institutions. FSAP follow-up technical assistance to implement crisis management framework.

  • FSAP follow-up technical assistance on regulatory framework with the main focus on Prakas and related regulations

  • FSAP follow up technical assistance on development in financial sector to promote financial inclusion agenda in Cambodia.

OngoingTwo or three missions a year.
Public sector management
  • Public Financial Management Reform Program (PFMRP)

  • Public administration reform (PAR) potential technical assistance support envisioned.

  • Public Expenditure Review (PER) is being planned to cover key social sectors such as health and education.

OngoingPublic Financial Management Modernization Project (PFMMP)
Trade and Private Sector Development
  • Trade Related Assistance in Cambodia (TRAC under Bank Execution)

  • Trade Dev. Support Program (TDSP under Recipient Execution)

  • Trade Logistic Blueprint and Connectivity

  • Customs modernization and reform

  • Non-tariff measure (NTR) and trade repository,

  • Investment incentive policy

  • SPS automation system,

  • Certification of country origin automation,

  • Trade mark registration and Intellectual Property Rights

  • Business registration automation system.

On going
The IMF’s Work Program in the next 12 MonthsMacroeconomic policy analysis and advice
  • 2015 Article IV consultation

  • Policy notes on request

June 2015 OngoingOctober 2015
Technical assistance
  • Fiscal sector: Tax administration, macro-fiscal capacity building, PFM

  • Financial sector: FSAP follow-up work, resident banking supervision advisor, consolidated supervision, foreign exchange market, liquidity management, data improvement

  • Statistics: National accounts, price, balance of payments

B. Agreement onJointProducts andMissions
Joint Products in the next 12 months• Debt sustainability analysis2015 Article IV consultationsDuring Article IV consultations

Relations with the Asian Development Bank

(July 2015)

As of December 31, 2014, Cambodia has received $2.11 billion in Asian Development Bank (AsDB) lending, grants, and technical assistance including 77 loan projects and programs of $1,798.26 million with low interest, and 21 Asian Development Fund (ADF) grants of $255.71 million. Cumulative disbursements to Cambodia as of 17 April 2015 for active sovereign lending and grants are $476.80 million.

The sector composition of active lending, grants, and technical assistance as of 17 April 2015 is: (i) agriculture, natural resources and rural development, $359.81 million; (ii) education $106.77 million; (iii) energy, $76.58 million; (iv) finance, $15.44 million; (v) health, $10.00 million; (vi) industry and trade, $11.95 million; (vii) public sector management (PSM), $28.14 million; (viii) transport, $407.25 million; and (ix) water and other urban infrastructure and services, $97.70 million.

The AsDB Cambodia Country Partnership Strategy (CPS), 2014–2018, endorsed by the Board on November 28, 2014, aligns with Cambodia’s strategic planning cycle and the priorities reflected in the Rectangular Strategy for Growth, Employment, Equity and Efficiency, Phase III (RSIII) and the National Strategic Development Plan (NSDP, 2014–2018). Consistent with the government’s economic reform priorities, the impact of the CPS will be reduction in poverty and vulnerability. The CPS embeds the three strategic agendas of the Midterm Review of Strategy 2020 into all AsDB operations: (i) inclusive economic growth; (ii) environmentally sustainable growth; and (iii) regional cooperation and integration (RCI).

The 2014–18 CPS builds on two strategic pillars for AsDB’s activities in Cambodia: (i) rural-urban-regional links, and (ii) human and social development, and one facilitating pillar: PSM. Expanding rural-urban-regional connectivity is an integrated approach to developing those areas where most poor people live and focuses on transport and economic corridor development to link national value chains with the region and the world. This pillar develops rural-urban-regional infrastructure (including irrigation and water management, rural electrification, rural roads, rural water supply, urban infrastructure, road maintenance, and trade facilitation) and supports the commercialization of farms and competitiveness of agribusiness through improved connectivity. The second pillar, targeted human and social development, supports access to, and the quality of, secondary education, and targeted skills development through technical and vocational education and training linked to evolving demands of the labor market. PSM covers decentralization and deconcentration and public financial management reforms and acts as facilitating pillar to improve country and sector governance and mitigate project-level fiduciary risks.

AsDB has been a leading development partner of the finance sector in Cambodia since 1999. A comprehensive approach was required to rebuild the financial system in a devastated economy that had no finance sector. The Third Financial Sector Program (TFSP) has been operating since 2011 and supported implementation of recommendations of the 2010 Financial Sector Assessment Program

(FSAP) and initial stages of the government’s updated Financial Sector Development Strategy, 2011–2020. After successfully rebuilding the basic foundation of the banking industry under the First and Second Financial Sector Programs, the TFSP supports the sector’s expansion to cover the important subsectors of nonbanking services and capital markets, and to boost investor’s and beneficiaries’ confidence in the system with a stronger legal and regulatory framework, necessary infrastructure, and better quality of services, including consumer protection. Beyond this, AsDB will support improved access to formal sources of finance, especially in rural areas, both through related AsDB initiatives, such as those to support growth of commercial farms and rural enterprises, and through private sector operations, which will focus on finance sector development, including private equity, transport, agribusiness, water supply and sanitation, and trade and supply chain finance for SMEs.

AsDB has provided policy and advisory technical assistance for public private partnerships (PPPs) in Cambodia. AsDB has assisted the government to review existing policies, laws, regulations, and institutional arrangements; develop a strategic framework for PPPs; and proposed changes to the law on concessions in order to make the PPP process effective. A capacity development technical assistance project for PPPs is currently implemented to help build the institutional capacity of government’s agencies involved in PPPs.

Asian Development Bank: Loans/Grants Commitment and Disbursements to Cambodia 1992–2014(In millions of U.S. dollars, as of December 31, 2014)
No.YearLoan/Grant ApprovalsContract Awards/ CommitmentDisbursements
212012 8312.679.560.5
222013 998.2149.6163.6
232014 10247.3104.198.7

US$10 million loans and US$42 million grants.

US$62 million loans and US$7.8 million grants.

US$27.1 million loans and US$37 million grants.

US$53.8 million loans and US$30.3 million grants.

US$71.7 million loans and US$72.8 million grants.

US$95.0 million loans and US$65.8 million grants.

US$67.0 million loans and US$11.9 million grants.

US$275.46 million loans and $37.16 grants.

US$70.0 million loans and US$28.21 million grants.

US$226.0 million loans and US$21.25 million grants. Source: Asian Development Bank.

US$10 million loans and US$42 million grants.

US$62 million loans and US$7.8 million grants.

US$27.1 million loans and US$37 million grants.

US$53.8 million loans and US$30.3 million grants.

US$71.7 million loans and US$72.8 million grants.

US$95.0 million loans and US$65.8 million grants.

US$67.0 million loans and US$11.9 million grants.

US$275.46 million loans and $37.16 grants.

US$70.0 million loans and US$28.21 million grants.

US$226.0 million loans and US$21.25 million grants. Source: Asian Development Bank.

Statistical Issues

(September 2015)

Assessment of Data Adequacy for Surveillance

General. Data provision is broadly adequate for surveillance. Extensive technical assistance (TA) has been provided by the IMF, United Nations Development Programme, Asian Development Bank (AsDB), and World Bank, as well as by bilateral partners, leading to substantial capacity improvements. Currently, Cambodia is participating in Statistics Department’s (STA’s) project on the Implementation of the System of National Accounts and International Comparison Program, funded by the government of Japan. This project will provide TA to build statistical capacity and improve both national accounts and price statistics. Despite the progress made in improving data statistics, several shortcomings in macroeconomic data still hamper timely and comprehensive analysis.

National accounts. Despite improvements in recent years, weaknesses remain in the quality and timeliness of national accounts data. The quality of GDP estimates remains hampered by the lack of comprehensive and reliable source data on a production and expenditure basis, in part due to resource constraints and weak data collection techniques. In November 2011, a TA mission assessed current methodologies used to compile national accounts estimates and provided support with the development of the quarterly national accounts estimates. In 2014 February, another TA mission was conducted mainly to assist the National Institute of Statistics (NIS) processing the results of Cambodia’s first ever 2011 Economic Census of Cambodia (EC2011) for improving GDP estimates. The purpose of the EC2011 was not particularly focused on national accounts, hence TA concluded further improvements are needed to convert EC 2011 data into national accounts data following the System of National Accounts (SNA) concepts and definitions. The TA mission also assessed the implementation of the previous mission recommendations and found that progress has stalled partly due to resource constraints. Statistics Sweden has been assisting the NIS for improving the national accounts compilation.

Price statistics. The compilation of the consumer price index (CPI) suffers from insufficient coverage. An updated CPI series was introduced starting in April 2012. Geographic coverage of the series has been expanded to include Phnom Penh plus five provinces. A STA TA mission visited Phnom Penh in April 2012 to assist with updating/improving the CPI. The authorities indicated a need for assistance with developing a producer price index (PPI), but no funds have been allocated to support the compilation of an ongoing PPI.

Government finance statistics (GFS). The Ministry of Finance and Economy began implementing reforms to the government accounting system and budgetary nomenclature in 2007, based on the Government Finance Statistics Manual (GFSM) 2001, with the assistance of the IMF. In addition, several STA missions have assisted with GFS compilation procedures within the GSFM 2001 framework. In 2011, Cambodia agreed to participate in the GFS project funded by the Government of Japan. As a result, authorities have benefited from three TA missions in 2012, 2013, and October 2014 to assist them in the compilation and implementation of GFS. The objectives of latest TA were (i) finalizing the Charts of Accounts (CoA) mapping into GFS, which will allow integration into the new Financial Management Information System (FMIS) and use of the FMIS to produce GFS tables; and (ii) addressing questions related to the compilation of below-the-line data based on the GFSM 2001 and its update, the GFSM 2014. The new CoA is implemented starting January 2015. Despite improvements, further actions are needed in areas such as integrating the coverage of GFS to broader public sectors and local governments, develop and implement the functional classification of expenditure, reconciling data with monetary and financial statistics and external sector statistics data.

Monetary and financial statistics. The NBC compiles the balance sheet and survey for the central bank and other depository institutions in accordance with the IMF’s Monetary and Financial Statistics Manual. Since August 2005, the NBC has reported monthly monetary and financial statistics to STA using the Standardized Report Forms. The NBC received TA during the FSAP on the compilation of financial soundness indicators (FSIs). The NBC now compiles monthly core FSIs and shares them with IMF staff irregularly. Some data inconsistencies continue to pose a challenge to the interpretation of FSIs. STA’s TA mission focused on the methodology of compilation of FSIs is scheduled in September 2015.

External sector statistics. Cambodia is part of the Asian module of the Project on the Improvement of External Sector Statistics (ESS) in the Asia Pacific Region, (funded by the government of Japan launched in October 2012), which aims to improve the accuracy, availability, comparability and timeliness of ESS in the region. The project consists mainly of short-term TA missions in three years. Third TA mission in September 2014 reviewed progress in the implementation of the action plan agreed during first TA mission in April 2013 and second TA mission in November 2013. Additionally, mission focused on improving direct investment statistics and strengthening interagency cooperation in data sharing for balance of payments purposes. The NBC has made progress in improving the compilation system following the 2013 TA missions. The most significant accomplishments include: (i) conducting a series of training sessions with commercial banks to enhance their understanding of the international transactions reporting system (ITRS); (ii) initiating the work for establishing the business register in cooperation with other government institutions; and (iii) preparing the draft direct investment survey questionnaire. However, further actions are needed in the following areas: (i) improving inter-institutional cooperation among government institutions; and (ii) improving coverage and address methodological inconsistencies. Foreign direct investment, which is believed to be large, relies excessively on approvals, and gaps exist with respect to large build-operate-transfer projects in the energy sector. It is welcomed that the NBC is launching survey on foreign direct investment. The NBC receives monthly data from the General Department of Customs and Excise (GDCE) broken down into main commodities, which it uses to generate quarterly BOP figures as well as for internal analysis purposes. The quarterly trade figures, which are much more robust because they include updated monthly figures, needs to be provided to the NBC in timelier and more systemically manner. A significant improvement of Cambodia’s external sector statistics can be achieved if compilers strive to enhance and increase the use of the existing ITRS, which can serve as a cost-efficient and comprehensive data source to capture BOP transactions. Gaps also exist in public external debt and official transfers (e.g. grants), and no data are available for private external debts.

Data Standards and Quality

Cambodia participates in the IMF’s General Data Dissemination System. No data ROSC are available.

Cambodia: Table of Common Indicators Required for Surveillance(As of September 2015)
Date of latest ObservationDate ReceivedFrequency of Data1Frequency of Reporting1Frequency of Publication1
Exchange Rates9/21/ 20159/21/ 2015DDW
International Reserve Assets and Reserve Liabilities of the Monetary Authorities28/20159/2015BiweeklyBiweekly, 4 week lagN/A
Reserve/Base Money7/20159/2015MM, 4–6 week delayM
Broad Money7/20159/2015MM, 4–6 week delayM
Central Bank Balance Sheet7/20159/2015MM, 4–6 week delayM
Consolidated Balance Sheet of the Banking System7/20159/2015MM, 4–6 week delayM
Interest Rates37/20159/2015MM, 3 month lagM
Consumer Price Index7/20159/2015MM, 2–4 week lagM
Revenue, Expenditure, Balance and Composition of Financing4—General5/20158/2015MM, 4–6 week lagM
Revenue, Expenditure, Balance and Composition of Financing4—Central5/20158/2015MM, 4-6 week lagM
Stocks of Central Government and Central Government-Guaranteed Debt65/20158/2015MM, 3 month lagA
External Current Account Balance3/20158/2015QQ, 3-5 month lagQ
Exports and Im ports of Goods and Services7/20159/2015MM, 4 week lagM
GDP/GNP20146/2015AA, 6 month lagA
Gross External Debt6/20158/2015MM, 4 week lagA
International Investment Position73/20158/2015QQ, 3–5 month lagQ

Daily (D), Weekly (W), Monthly (M), Quarterly (Q), Annually (A), Irregular (I), and Not Available (N/A).

Includes reserve assets pledged or otherwise encum bered as well as net derivative positions.

Both market-based and officially-determined, including discount rates, money market rates, rates on treasury bills, notes and bonds.

Foreign, domestic bank, and domestic nonbank financing.

The general government consists of the central government (budgetary funds, extra budgetary funds, and social security funds) and state and local governments.

Including currency and maturity composition.

Includes external gross financial asset and liability positions vis-à-vis nonresidents.

Daily (D), Weekly (W), Monthly (M), Quarterly (Q), Annually (A), Irregular (I), and Not Available (N/A).

Includes reserve assets pledged or otherwise encum bered as well as net derivative positions.

Both market-based and officially-determined, including discount rates, money market rates, rates on treasury bills, notes and bonds.

Foreign, domestic bank, and domestic nonbank financing.

The general government consists of the central government (budgetary funds, extra budgetary funds, and social security funds) and state and local governments.

Including currency and maturity composition.

Includes external gross financial asset and liability positions vis-à-vis nonresidents.

Main Websites of Data

National Bank of Cambodia (

Exchange rates Balance of payments

Ministry of Economic and Finance (

Government budget

Fiscal revenue, expenditure, and financing

National Institute of Statistics (

Consumer Price Index

National accounts

Population census

Labor force survey

Socioeconomic survey

Household survey

When a member has overdue financial obligations outstanding for more than three months, the amount of such arrears will be shown in this section.

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