Cambodia: Kingdom’s external debt reaches $9.7B

The Cambodian government signed concessional loan agreements for $9.7 billion with bilateral and multilateral partners from 1993 to June 2022, according to the Cambodia Public Debt Statistical Bulletin released recently.

The bulletin, released by the Ministry of Economy and Finance, said Cambodia signed to borrow $4,043 million from China, $471 million from France, $971 million from Japan, $471 million from South Korea, $46 million from Thailand, $13 million from India, and $13 million from Vietnam.

Regarding loans from multilateral agencies, the Kingdom borrowed $1,970 million from the Asian Development Bank, $891 million from the World Bank, $108 million from the International Fund for Agricultural Development, $72 million from European Investment Bank, $21 million from OPEC Fund for International Development, $8 million from Nordic Development Fund, and $5 million from the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

All the loans are highly concessional with an average grant element of around 41 percent, it said, citing that the purpose of the loans is to finance public investment projects in the priority sectors that support long-term sustainable economic growth and increase productivity.

The present value of external debt to GDP was 24.9 percent compared to the threshold of 40 percent, stated the bulletin.

“Despite being impacted by the spread of Covid-19 and other external factors, Cambodia’s public debt situation continues to remain ‘sustainable’ and ‘low risk’ of debt distress,” read the bulletin.

According to the bulletin, from Q1 to Q2 2022, the government has paid debt services to development partners to the tune of $213.51 million, in which 76 percent is principal and 24 percent interest and other fees.