As a country highly vulnerable to climate change, the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) is committed to driving the transition to a low carbon economy that is more inclusive and sustainable, as part of its long-term development vision. In this context, the Royal Government of Cambodia produced an ambitious Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) showcasing its progress in climate policy and setting up mitigation targets and adaptation actions responding to its national circumstances.
In the private sector, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) play a vital role in Cambodia's economy. According to the Ministry of Industry, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MISTI), SMEs represent up to 70 percent of employment and 99.8 percent of enterprises, while contributing to 58 percent of the GDP. However, these SMEs face challenges such as limited access to finance, skill gaps, low productivity, and weak governance. On the financing side, there are limited investments in sectors like agriculture, education, energy, and information and communications technology. Very few deals with considerably smaller ticket size went to agriculture, education, energy, or technology and communication. It is argued that the size of impact investment in other sectors than finance could be as low as USD 30 million to USD 50 million between 2017 and 2020, often with small ticket size.
In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is vital to restore and attract more and quality investment to support Cambodia’s recovery and long-term sustainable development – including climate mitigation and adaptation.
The Growth Stage Impact Ventures (GSIV) programme
Developed by UNDP, the Growth Stage Impact Ventures (GSIV) programme seeks to identify enterprises from developing countries that have developed at-scale products and services that contribute to the SDGs while achieving commercial success. Identified ventures have a proven impact, demonstrated product-market fit, and a revenue-generating self-sustainable model to attract local and international capital.
In September 2023, building on the UNDP Cambodia SDG Investor Map and the Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), UNDP Cambodia and UNDP Geneva launched the Growth Stage Impact Ventures program for Climate Adaptation in Cambodia, in collaboration with the UNDP SDG Impact, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and the Cambodia Ministry of Commerce.