Cambodia Shows Signs of Improvement in Public Debt Management

: 's public debt management strategy has showed signs of success as the country's public debt has decreased to US$11.09 billion in the first quarter of 2024. This is a positive development compared to the US$11.24 billion recorded at the end of 2023.

In the first quarter (Q1) of 2024, the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) has signed new concessional loans with development partners in the total amount of US$140 million equivalent to SDR 105.25 million accounting for 6 percent of the ceiling permitted by Law (SDR 1,700 million), according to Cambodia's Public Debt Situation issued on Friday.

The loan signed in Q1 2024 decreased by approximately 71 percent compared to the same period last year.

The RGC has also disbursed US$141 million from the existing concessional loans, used for infrastructure and for other priority sector (non-infrastructure), down 47 percent compared to the same period last year. Meanwhile, the RGC has paid debt service in the amount of US$181 million, a year-on-year increase by 0.5 percent.

As of the end of Q1 2024, including the old debt, the RGC has a total public debt stock of US$11.09 billion in which US$11 billion is public external debt and US$98 million is public domestic debt.

The composition of the public debt stock is comprised of US$ 46 percent, SDR 19 percent, CNY 11 percent, JPY 11 percent, EUR 7 percent, and local and other currencies 6 percent.

All the key debt indicators in 2024 are well below the thresholds, of which the Present Value of Public and Publicly Guaranteed External Debt to GDP, is at 19 percent compared to the 40 percent threshold, the report stated.

“Despite being impacted by the widespread of Covid-19 and other external factors, Cambodia's public debt situation continues to remain ‘sustainable' and ‘low risk' of debt distress,” it underlined. The report added that in Q1 2024, the RGC has issued government securities in a total amount of US$45 million for financing supports to the public investments for economic and productivity.

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