Business as usual for retail sales ahead of election

Chea Vannak / Khmer Times No Comments Share:
Customers shop at Makro supermarket in Phnom Penh. KT/Chor Sokunthea

It is business as usual for vendors in Takhmao city’s Prek Ho Market, who are busy selling their products to walk-in customers, and ignore the loudspeakers from political parties campaigning for the July 29 election.

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Samnang, owner of Samnang Pov retail shop, sees brisk business during our visit, and says his sales figures are hitting the usual targets. He is seemingly not worried about the impact of the upcoming national polls on his business.

“Sales are normal,” Mr Samnang, who has been doing business at the market for two decades, says.

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“I observed that consumers are not really distracted by the electoral process,” Mr Samnang says, surprised that we ask whether his sales were affected ahead of the polls.

The election campaign opened on July 7 with 20 registered parties kicking-off their street marches and turning on their loudspeakers to attract voters.

Another vendor shares similar views on the stable sales at the market.

“The customers are acting as they normally would. I think customers are not worried about these elections,” says Bun Ly.

Both vendors agree the market is quieter this year compared to previous elections, when customers were busy buying foodstuffs to store at home.

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According to the vendors, there are no signs of unrest among consumers at the moment as a result of the national polls.

Treav Raksmey, an employee of a local company, says he is not worried about the elections, which he believes will not disrupt business activity.

People shopping at Makro supermarket. KT/Chor Sokunthea

“I don’t think the situation is worse this time around. Most people are not worried about the elections, or about the election campaign period,” Mr Raksmey says.

He said if people were worried, they would be stocking up on supplies to prepare for a potential spike in prices as a result of turmoil.

“But people are shopping as usual, which means the price of essential goods will not increase. I don’t think I will need to stock up on foodstuffs and other supplies.”

The Cambodian economy is forecast to undergo strong growth in 2018 due to a number of factors, including stable investor confidence, the recovery of the global economy, and an increase in domestic spending.

The National Bank of Cambodia has also forecast that GDP per capita will reach $1,563 this year.

The country remains stable from a macroeconomic perspective, with inflation at a manageable 2.6 percent, said the Central Bank.

Mey Kalyan, senior advisor to the government’s Supreme Economic Council, shares the same sentiment.

“Business activity is normal and this means there are no signs of disruption,” Mr Kalyan says, adding that the stable situation ahead of the election is due to a rise in incomes across the nation.

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