New Korean bank enters local market

August 1, 2008 at 4:56 am Leave a comment

The Phnom Penh Post – July 25, 2008

Written by Sovan Ngoun

The third Korean commercial bank to set up shop in Cambodia opened July 16, bringing the total number of commercial banks in the Kingdom to 22, according to National Bank of Cambodia governor Chea Chanto.

Speaking at the opening ceremony, Chea Chanto said that Booyoung Khmer Bank was being established at a time when the Cambodian banking sector was seeing rapid growth.

The new bank also reflected the growing confidence of Korean investors in Cambodia’s banking system, he said.

As the regulatory authority for the banking system, the National Bank supported free competition and reasonable access to credit for borrowers. It encouraged the entry into the market of bankers with entrepreneurial spirit and a high level of professional skills who were able to effectively raise and manage capital and provide credit to more effectively allocate capital resources, Chea Chanto said.

We don’t need simple creditors who merely offer loans, he added.

“I am highly confident that the bank will demonstrate itself as a good operator that complies with rules and regulations while providing financial services, especially to small- and medium-sized enterprises that need long-term loans to expand their business activities,” Chea Chanto said.

“I do hope that the bank will bring real banking professionals to Cambodia to improve business operations, raise management skills, and efficiently allocate financial resources, while respecting the rule of fair competition and market discipline.”

“We wish to build financial credibility among Cambodians and business people in Cambodia,” said Booyoung chairman Lee Joong Keun, who said the launch of his bank grew out of the good ties between Cambodia and South Korea and the stable political situation in Cambodia.

To celebrate the grand opening, Lee announced that Booyoung Khmer Bank was donating 40,000 white boards worth $3 million to Cambodian schools and would provide $7.5 million for the construction of 300 primary school buildings around the Kingdom.  

“Booyoung Khmer Bank is the third commercial bank from South Korea after Camko Bank and Shinhan Khmer Bank to open since last year, and its total capital is 100 percent held by Korean shareholders,” said Chea Chanto.

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