Private Sector Has Saved $70 Million in Past 5 Years

The private sector has saved nearly $70 million over the past five years due to reforms brought about through meetings between government and private sector representatives, according to a report released July 19.

Through regular meetings of its working groups, the twice yearly government-private sector forum changed a wide range of taxes, fees, and regulations that save millions, according to the evaluation commissioned by the International Finance Corporation and AusAid.

The savings for business included a reduction in the high cost on the toll road to Sihanoukville, the simplification of bank licensing requirements, and the postponement of an accommodation tax for hotels and guesthouses, according to the report.

Tim Smyth, managing director of Indochina Research, said that a lack of financial and legal infrastructure is still an obstacle for the private sector.

When there is a lack of adequate commercial law and enforcement, “the end result is that people are making it up as they go along. They end up wasting time, and in business a waste of time is a waste of money,” he said.

(Additional reporting by Suzy Khimm)


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