German Electronics Giant to Open Office in Phnom Penh

Siemens AG, one of the world’s largest electrical engineering and electronics companies, is scheduled to announce today the opening of an office in Cambodia.

In a statement prepared for a press conference this afternoon, a representative for the German-based firm said the opening re­flects the company’s confidence in Cambodia.

“We see tremendous business opportunities in Cambodia,” said Wolfgang Kitz, who will head the  office. “To be present even before the elections shows our confidence in your country because we believe everything will be smooth and that Cambodia has a promising future.”

In the statement, the company said it would explore opportunities in communications, health care, energy, industry, information, transportation and household appliances. Kitz said Sie­mens will reinvest a large portion of its profits into technology training for Cambodians.

In 1996, five officials from Siemens’ Thai affiliate visited Cambodia and had discussions with the Ministry of In­dustry on electrical power in­vestments. The company was also involved in the installation of Shinawatra’s digital phone network.

Its headquarters are to be in the Mild Seven Building on Preah Sihanouk Boulevard.

Siemens, which has head offices in Berlin and Munich, has more than a half million employees worldwide and is represented in 190 countries. Its annual revenues exceed $63 billion, according to company information on the Internet.

Susanne Baumann, first secretary of the German Embassy in Phnom Penh, said Sunday that Siemens is investigating opportunities particularly in telecommunications and power but hasn’t decided on a specific project.

Opening an office before the elections, she said, “I think is purely a business calculation.”

Soun Sothy, secretary-general of the Cambodian Investment Board, also said the fact that such a firm is opening an office in Cambodia is significant.

“The reason they are interested to invest in Cambodia is because this country is safe now,” Soun Sothy said.

The number of investment projects approved in the first half of 1998 dropped 60 percent compared to last year, due to both Cambodia’s political uncertainties and the regional economic crisis.

A government adviser said interest among investors is in­creasing.


Last July’s factional fighting and regional economic problems contributed to a 60 percent drop in capital investment during the first six months of 1998.

A senior government adviser said many potential investors have recently



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