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Cambodia is rapidly changing – economically, socially and politically. With an average annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of about 7.7 percent in the last two ecades, the country is now on the verge of graduating from low-income to middle-income status. A society that was torn apart by protracted civil conflict and external aggression in the 1970s and the 1980s is now demonstrating strong social cohesion and unity.

I am pleased to introduce CDRI’s 2013-14 Annual Report reflecting another year of strong research output, stable human resources, and a healthy financial position. However CDRI continues to work hard to achieve more long term programme-based resource partnerships, to move beyond its current dependency on short to medium term project opportunities, to build sustainability.

This publication is CDRI’s first major macro-development research product on Cambodia in recent years. The empirical research it presents places Cambodia’s development performance and priorities in a multi-country comparative perspective. The Report relies on both quantitative and qualitative evidence, often from many sources – national and international. Many of the Report’s findings and conclusions, therefore, are only as reliable as the empirical evidence they are based on.

For the last 20 years, Cambodia’s annual growth rate has averaged around 7.7 percent. The country is now on the verge of graduating from low-income to lower-middle income status. As Cambodia traverses its middle-income journey over the next two decades, it will be important to ensure that the momentum of past growth is maintained. For that, the country will have to manage the many development challenges that typically plague middle-income countries.