20 Years of FDI in Cambodia: Towards Upper Middle-Income Status and Beyond


Project Description

The assessment of the development potential of inward FDI (IFDI), and its complementarity with outward FDI (OFDI), in terms of creation/destruction and specialisation/diversification of national, regional and local economic activities, sectors and functions, employment, skills and innovation is all the more urgent to enhance the understanding of economic development trajectories and resilience at both national and local levels, and of the ways to support them. This project proposal aims at reviewing systematically and comparatively, and in the light of adapted conceptual frameworks from the extended literature on internationalisation, territorial (subnational) policy measures for the global connectivity of regions. The current policy tools are still largely dominated by overall inward FDI attractiveness as a means to increase productivity: however, the current state of globalisation and the relevance of global production and innovation networks (GPNs) and value chains (GVCs) neither justify nor ensure effectiveness of such a narrow – and still largely nationally-designed – intervention to enhancing economic development with specific reference to Cambodian regions.


Project Objective

The study may deliver the following milestones:

  • Offering a conceptual and operational framework for a theory-driven analysis of the structure, geography and dynamism of FDI in the economy of Cambodia.
  • Presenting an initial analysis based on secondary data of FDI trends, by sector, geography and function. Information comes from fDiMarkets, a proprietary database created and maintained by Financial Times, covering cross-border greenfield.
  • Investments for all countries and sectors worldwide between 2003 and 2022 (acquisition of the latest 5 years by end of March 2023).
  • Developing a broad comparative analysis on the aforementioned FDI indicators (and policies) with respect to neighbouring economies (e.g. Vietnam, Lao PDR).
  • Discussing possible methodological options for further in-depth case studies at both firm (multinational investors) and sector levels.
  • Offering key insights to inform evidence-based development and industrial policies and to undertake further research to position Cambodia at the intersection between ‘global’ and ‘local’.

Start Date : 02-Nov-2023
End Date : 01-May-2024

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