Banks, Private Companies Discuss Loans, World Markets

More than 30 private companies and commercial banks met Monday to discuss bridging the wide gap between manufacturers and financiers.

“People do not trust the banks and banks do not trust the business enterprises, so it creates a very high-risk environment,” said Hang Sochivin, chief of the Com­merce Ministry’s Technical and Executive Bureau. “Our gold discussion is, How are bankers and enterprise companies going to be able to produce goods for the international market? Right now, it’s too high risk to give a loan.”

The discussions, sponsored by the World Trade Organization-affil­i­ated Government and In­terna­tion­al Trade Center, are aimed at teaching businesses to compete  globally. Cam­bo­dia ex­pects to join the WTO in September.

“People are running businesses now, but they do not yet un­derstand how to compete in international trade,” said Sec­retary of State Sok Siphana at the Ministry of Commerce. “They must learn to think as global businessmen.”

While the WTO will give Cam­bo­dia access to a large market, Sok Siphana said traders need to be professional and know how glo­bal trade works to sell their goods.

“They know to drive, but they need to know how to drive in the right direction, properly and professionally,” Sok Siphana said.

The Commerce Ministry and the Inter­na­tional Trade Commis­sion ex­perts are leading the two-day discussions aimed at teaching Cam­bo­dian businesses to improve their professionalism in imports, exports, purchasing and supply management techniques.

The experts offered to tour Cambodian factories, banks and businesses and consult with them on ways to compete on the global market.

Cambo­dia International Invest­ment Co­op­er­ation owner Keo Rattana said that before he attended the conference he did not know where to export his Cam­bo­dian Whiskey.

“I was wondering how I compete with other whiskey products from other world whiskey producers,” Keo Rattana said.

The business methods taught at the conference gave him a better idea of how to plan his business, he said.

Still, the distrust between manufacturers and money lenders is a large challenge for exporters pre­paring to enter the global market.

“Bankers want to make money as quickly as possible,” Hang Sochivin said. “The less risk involved, the more the possibility the bank will give the loan.”


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