Close to half of micro, small and medium sized enterprises (MSMEs) in Cambodia use digital tools for their business activities while the majority of Khmer online companies saw digital tools as essential to keeping their businesses operating in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a new report released by Meta.
The report, ‘MSMEs and Digital Tool Use Amidst the Covid-19 Pandemic’, was launched at an event presided over by Undersecretary of State for the Ministry of Economy and Finance Kong Marry (MEF).
Government officials from the Ministry of Information, the Ministry of Post and Telecommunications, Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology and Innovation, and Ministry of Interior as well as public and private sector representatives were present at the function.
Addressing a select gathering, Marry said, “Enterprise digitalization is one of the three main pillars outlined in the Cambodia digital economy and society policy framework 2021-2035. To this end, the ministry, which is taking the leading role in coordinating this work, has been putting a lot of effort into helping businesses to be able to adopt and make use of digital technologies to improve their operations and extend their markets. The digitalization of businesses is the key to supporting the development of our country’s economy, acceleration of growth and to build resilience beyond the pandemic. The ministry will continue to work closely with Meta, its app and other relevant stakeholders to support this important mission to fully achieve the country’s digital transformation for years to come.”
The study has shown that more than half (73%) of surveyed online MSMEs reported that digital tools were important or essential to keeping their business running during COVID-19, with the increase in home-centric consumption. Surveyed online MSMEs reported that Facebook apps (67 percent), and specifically Facebook (66 percent), helped them adapt to the COVID-19 environment. With more people now also multi-screening than ever before, a new consumer way of life is emerging – new purchasing habits, new ways to discover, and new expectations.
“We continue to focus on accelerating recovery in Cambodia by doing what we do best – providing access and connections, sharing insights to help communities and businesses navigate the new normal. The results of the survey show a significant increase in the use of digital tools, especially Facebook and direct messaging, to conduct business in Cambodia. This brings both opportunities and challenges and helps us to decide how to engage with local MSMEs, we need to help them discover more about social commerce and provide education about the best way to use digital tools to improve their business,” said Facebook Public Policy Manager for Cambodia Pheakdey Heng.
The Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) Survey was conducted by DAI and Ipsos from June 14 to July 23, 2021, among 997 owners and senior managers of micro (1 employee), small (2-9 employees) and medium-sized (10-249 employees) enterprises in Cambodia. The survey was part of a wider study of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), leveraging new survey data from business leaders globally across South America, South Asia and Southeast Asia.
Social media, especially Facebook, has played a significant role for my business during Covid-19 pandemic. During the worst part of the crisis, we moved all our business online and even now, when the Covid-19 cases have declined, we keep on using Facebook and other digital tools as primary channels to reach and engage with our customers, ” said entrepreneur Am Veasna.
Improved connectivity and increased training opportunities were considered essential for companies wishing to conduct more of their business online with 64% of those MSMEs surveyed reporting an interest in learning more about using digital tools to find new customers.
This article was first published in Khmer Times. All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.