Cambodia has quite a robust community of SMEs but are facing serious problems such as low productivity, lack of human capital and innovation. Despite all this, one aspect stood out in the Cambodian community of SMEs – it was composed mainly of women owners. What are the factors that enable them to outshine in the SMEs sector in Cambodia compared to the rest?
High motivation and financially literate
Cambodian women are diligent in supporting themselves and their families. Many Cambodian households' finances are managed by women. Therefore, women generally have a fundamental understanding of financial literacy. They are more aware of the risk, have better saving habits and learned through experience such as accounting and record keeping. However, it is still difficult for them to get loans from formal institutions such as banks and microfinance.
Technological and digital advancement
Rapid integration and improvement of technology amongst SMEs operations have provided access to many Cambodian, including women. With the country boasting the highest mobile connectivity amongst the region, many online shops, most of which are run by women, have taken to Facebook and other social media platforms. This type of business is easy to set up, convenient to manage and can be done from the comfort of their homes.
A community that empowers women
For many well-known and successful women entrepreneurs, they don’t just stop there. Instead, they turn their businesses into a community that empower and provide even more opportunities for other women. Their contributions and achievement can be hardly overlooked, and deserve recognition and support, especially in the field of economic development, environmental protection, and health awareness.
Hopefully, financial institutions such as banks and microfinance can support them by designing products that are tailored towards women for their business financing in the future.By addressing these fundamental needs, maybe can help women in businesses to achieve their goals and transition into the formal market.
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