Research Reports  

Cambodia Covid-19 Poverty Monitor Bulletin

Published: 02-Jun-2023


This bulletin is one of a series produced by the Chronic poverty Advisory Network (CPAN) during the pandemic. It builds on a foundation developed by pre-pandemic qualitative research on poverty dynamics to understand the reasons why people are able to escape poverty, stay out of poverty, become impoverished, or are chronically poor. Additional data was collected during the pandemic, allowing us to map its differential impacts on people’s wellbeing. The pandemic was a crisis of multiple dimensions – a health crisis for some people, an economic and social crisis for many others. It has reversed progress that had been made in reducing poverty in the preceding decades, and has undermined achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The pandemic was also, in many cases, layered on pre-pandemic crises. The Covid-19 Poverty Monitoring Initiative has explored the effects of these crises on poor and vulnerable people.

Cambodia provides a unique case study in pandemic management. Its strong and relatively balanced policy responses – balancing restrictions imposed to prevent transmission of the virus with measures to mitigate the socioeconomic effects of those restrictions – are unparalleled among countries with a similar level of national income. Although these policy reponses did not manage to entirely counter the effects of the global economic slowdown, or the effects of lockdowns and restrictions on poor and vulnerable people, the actions taken illustrate the kinds of balanced policy responses that will be needed in any future pandemic to avoid the impoverishment that unmitigated public health responses can induce.

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