The Economics Unit has continued to work towards achieving three core research objectives: monitoring Cambodia’s macroeconomic management and performance, producing evidence-based economic policy analysis, and engaging more effectively in dialogue to inform policy. This year the team has made great strides in reaching its strategic goals.
Regular updates on macroeconomic indicators summarising national, regional and international general economic conditions are released through “Economy Watch” in the quarterly Cambodia Development Review, quarterly Vulnerable Worker Surveys and monthly Provincial Price Surveys.
Research has focused on inclusive growth, economic integration and trade liberalisation; private sector development; and labour migration and labour market policies. The Sida-supported five-year research program on Inclusive Growth is ongoing. The two remaining components explore the Efficiency of Microfinance Institutions in Cambodia and current job markets via Labour Market Analysis in Cambodia.
Three studies have been published as working papers, namely the Inclusiveness of Public Spending on Education, Health and Infrastructure in Cambodia, Harnessing the AEC for Industrial Development in Cambodia, and Education and Health in the GMS: The Case of Cambodia. Well underway are six other studies on the Interrelation between Public Policy, Migration and Cambodia’s Development, financed by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD); Mapping Sending Channels and the Management of Remittances in Cambodia, funded by GVC’s MIGRA SAFE program; The Dynamic Effects of Borrowing from Multiple Sources on Household Well-being: A Case of Eleven Villages in Cambodia, supported by PEP; Youth Outcomes and Determinants of Youth Vulnerabilities and Negative Outcomes and Understanding the Life Choices of High School Dropouts, both financed by OECD; and The AEC Guidebook for Businesses in Cambodia, supported by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
Under the revamped Greater Mekong Subregion Research Network (GMS-Net), making good progress is the new three-year program on Improving Job Prospects for the Young: Labour Markets, Skill Development and Private Sector in the Greater Mekong, In July, with support from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) of Canada, GMS-Net launched its first-ever competitive call for regional research proposals and awarded research grants to the eight best proposals (three from Cambodia, two from Vietnam, one each from Thailand, Laos and China).
Economists at CDRI won a grant for a study on Vocational Training and Labour Market Transitions: A Randomised Experiment among Cambodian Young Adults. The study findings will complement the Education Unit’s research on professional education and training. An important aspect of our work is to deliver research knowledge through the direct engagement of stakeholders in policy dialogue. Specifically, we have been working closely with the Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC) to provide research support for the implementation of the new Industrial Development Policy 2015-25. The team has also helped produce aide memories on agro-industry, small and medium-sized enterprises and skills development.
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