Cambodia Population and Economic Conditions

According to equzhou, Cambodia is a state in south-east Asia, in the Indochinese peninsula, bordering Thailand to the west and north, Laos to thenorth, Vietnam to the east and southeast; to the SW it overlooks the Gulf of Thailand.


The population is relatively homogeneous, being made up of about 85% of Khmer, descendants of Sinotibetan invaders who repelled the original Indochinese groups (Mon) on the peripheral plateaus, while the Cham of the eastern plains derive from people expelled from Vietnam around the 15th century. sec.; significant Chinese minorities. This structure, and even more the demographic dynamics and the distribution structure, have been heavily altered by the political-military events of the last thirty years of the 20th century, which would have led, among other things, to the death of about 1.7 million Cambodians. The traditional characteristics of marked rurality of the population were exasperated by the harsh anti-urban policy carried out by the Khmer Rouge, which have also effectively annihilated the education system and the few other elements of modern organization in the country. The economic and social level of the population is, for all this, rather low: the income per person (at purchasing power parity) is about 2000 dollars (2007), the illiterate are about a quarter of the adult population. International aid and a relatively low growth rate (1.8%, 2006 estimate; but the rate of growth had been much greater in the previous fifteen years) are slowly inducing a resumption of more positive conditions, which are also reflected in a rapid recovery. life expectancy, albeit modest (around 60 years). Traditional forms of agricultural organization, in villages scattered across the plain at small hills or river banks, and only partially grouped along the communication routes, they are however in decline, also given the de facto insecurity of vast rural regions, still strewn with anti-personnel mines. The return to the cities, after the forced emptying of the capital by the Khmer Rouge, took place in conditions of excessive spontaneity and, although the urban population does not reach 20% of the total, the densification in the capital causes serious management difficulties.

The official language is Khmer, but French is in common use. Traditional religion is Buddhism.


The country it is devoid of mineral resources; it has good availability of agricultural land and forests (severely affected) and, above all, of running water that would allow a huge hydroelectric production (currently, the annual production of water source is just 40 million kWh). About a third of the workforce is employed in agriculture, for which Cambodia has recovered food self-sufficiency (rice) since 2000, while commercial crops (peanuts, bananas, jute, cotton, tobacco, rubber) have little impact on the budget. of the country. The livestock equipment is discreet, the product of fishing in inland waters is noteworthy. Current agricultural practices are traditional ones, with scarce investments on the infrastructural level (irrigation, water management). The countryside is subject to seasonal flooding of rivers which, although they provide nutrients in the form of silt and allow crops to multiply in certain regions, they seem to hinder a more productive organization of activity. The industrial structure is weak (textiles, chemicals, engineering), but the very low cost of labor attracts investments and relocations: the manufacture of clothing is the first activity by income produced. Since the beginning of the century the economy of Cambodia has been proceeding at growth rates regularly above 5% per year; obviously, considering the almost zero initial level, these are increments that have small absolute dimensions. The second source of income is tourism (directed almost only to Angkor and the capital), growing, with around 1 million admissions (2004). The communications system is poor: 612 km of railways and 12,300 km of asphalted roads; the waterways amount to 3700 km. Ports to Kompong Som (sea) and Pnom Penh (river); main airports: Pnom Penh, Siem Reap, Battambang, Kompong Cham.

Cambodia Population and Economic Conditions