Phnom Penh (FN), May 29 – The Council for the Development of Cambodia approved 137 projects of Japanese foreign direct investment, worth about $2.5 billion, over the past 25 years, Cambodian Prime Minister Hun Sen addressed Wednesday at the Cambodia Investment Seminar at the 25th International Conference on the Future of Asia and a series of events in Tokyo, held from 29-31 May 2019.

“In terms of foreign direct investment from Japan, the Council for the Development of Cambodia approved 137 projects worth about $2.5 billion between 1994 and the first quarter of 2019,” he stated, adding that: “Investment has focused on electrical parts and electronics, auto parts, agro-industrial equipment, food processing, tourism and hotels as well as the hospital and shopping mall sectors.

According to the Premier, Cambodia has about 1,700 small and large Japanese businesses operating in many sectors such as banking, aviation, and restaurants. In the banking sector alone, there are now six banks with Japanese shareholders operating in Cambodia. Mizuho Bank was the first to open a branch, receiving its commercial banking license on 1 February 2017.

In the tourism sector, Cambodia welcomed more than 60,000 Japanese tourists in the first quarter of 2019, up two percent from the same period a year earlier. The number of Cambodian visitors to Japan is also increasing. According to the Japanese Embassy in Cambodia, the number of visas granted to Cambodians rose 34 percent last year.