The draft law on e-commerce is set to be completed and enacted by the end of this year, ahead of the launch of the Asean Economic Community (AEC), which begins at the end of the year, commerce officials said yesterday.
“The e-commerce law, which has about nine chapters and 90 articles, will govern, regulate and protect consumers for all transactions to pay and purchase things online,” said Mao Thora, the ministry’s secretary of state.
“The law will come into force later this year,” he said. Mr. Thora said that 15 of its 90 articles had already been finalized through cooperation between the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunication, the National Bank of Cambodia and the Ministry of Commerce.
It will comprise detailed regulations for online agreements and signatures, in line with international standards, officials said. It will also provide a legal framework for operating online businesses, they said.
Rami Sharaf, CEO of WorldBridge International, a major online shopping portal here, said its model already adhered to international standards and the dynamics of online trade globally. “I am very enthusiastic and very supportive about e-commerce… so we are following [international] standards and we [will] follow the direction of the Ministry of Commerce,” Mr. Sharaf said.
“We follow international rules even if we don’t have [those] rules in Cambodia [yet],” he added.
Economist Srey Chanthy welcomed the new law, saying it could provide protection to consumers and build trust in online trade. “It is better late than never,” he said. “The law will promote e-commerce, and hopefully protect consumers. It will contribute to business development and further economic growth,” Mr. Chanthy said.
The new law will make it easier to access business and registration information, as well as speed up all business transactions. With the AEC starting at the end of this year, all business in Cambodia will have a legal framework for operating e-commerce internationally, ministry officials said. They said the AEC will create a massive potential for Cambodia-based importers and exporters to expand internationally.