Cambodia’s total exports to the United States fell by 2.1%: Is the global economic crisis to blame?

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[INNEWS Comprehensive Report] Recently, the General Administration of Customs of Cambodia released a report showing that in the first nine months of 2023, Cambodia’s exports to the United States totaled nearly US$7 billion, a year-on-year decrease of 2.1%.

From January to September, Cambodia’s exports to the US market reached US$6.8 billion, while imports exceeded US$181 million.

It is worth noting that Cambodia’s export volume to the US market was the largest in September, reaching US$786 million, a year-on-year increase of 25.6%. An increase in Cambodian exports to the United States confirms the improvement in trade relations between the two countries. The United States has become Cambodia’s most important export market, driven by exports of clothing, tourism products, footwear, electronics, bicycles and automobiles, electronics, machinery and pharmaceuticals.

Cambodia’s imported products from the United States mainly include automobiles, machinery, cosmetics and electrical appliances. In addition to the United States, Cambodia’s main export markets include Vietnam (export value of approximately US$2 billion, an increase of 30.7%), China (export value of approximately US$1 billion, an increase of 18%) and Japan (export value of nearly US$900 million, a year-on-year decrease of 1.3%).

Ky Sereyvath, an economist at the Royal Academy of Cambodia, said the global economic crisis was triggered by the impact of the U.S. economic crisis and the wars in Ukraine and Russia. In the past, Cambodia’s exports of goods to the United States have declined due to these factors. In addition, the United States still has problems signing financial agreements.

He emphasized that exports to the United States may increase or decrease further, depending on the persistence of the global economic crisis, especially the war between Russia and Ukraine.

Ky Sereyvath pointed out that the war between the two countries has not shown signs of extinguishing, and the war in Israel has further escalated, continuing the global economic crisis.

It is understood that in 2022, the total bilateral trade between Cambodia and the United States will exceed US$9.281 billion, an increase of 18.6% from US$7.826 billion in 2021. According to data from the General Administration of Customs of Cambodia, Cambodia’s export volume was nearly US$8.969 billion, an increase of 19.7%, and its import volume exceeded US$312 million, a decrease of 7.1%.