Message from Chairman and CEO
Coming into 2021, the expectation was that we would put the challenges in 2020 linked to the Covid-19 global pandemic behind us. Chamroeun had implemented a proactive program to support its partners in dealing with their loss of income, and (both they and us) expected that they would be able to get back to pre-Covid income levels within 2021. Unfortunately, this was not to be, and in many ways 2021 ended up a more challenging year for Chamroeun’s partners, and the institution accordingly, than was 2020. Chamroeun saw restructuring levels rise to 20%, and late payments increase significantly. The National Bank of Cambodia (NBC), and generally the Royal Government of Cambodia, implemented pragmatic and effective policies and responses to the pandemic, including globally acclaimed vaccination drives, containment measures, fiscal policy adjustments, cash transfers, etc. But in the end, while these responses helped with macroeconomic stability and limited both the negative economic and health impacts of the pandemic, the economic downturn and sustained impacts to a range of sectors severely affected the lower-income families in Cambodia.
Within this challenging context, Chamroeun continued to drive its growth and diversification, to ensure its services were improved, continuously adjusted and with new products and services offered, to ensure a positive impact at household levels, but also in support to key agriculture value-chains. Chamroeun’s theory of change now includes notions of impact at the individual family level, but also in link to systemic issues which affect these. This has been effectively implemented in a range of agricultural sectors. For example, while adapted loans for smallholder farmers to purchase inputs help these to access capital at key moments in their agri-business ventures, this may not help to address the point of their access to markets. Accordingly, Chamroeun has developed a range of initiatives targeting value chain actors downstream, of note in the aquaculture, paddy, and horticulture sectors.
In summary, Chamroeun’s operations have been extremely challenging in 2021, but it has received strong financial and technical support from its key stakeholders, has implemented programs that effectively support its partners, and has ended up with growth similar to that of the sector-around 20% - all while keeping financially afloat.
Chamroeun looks cautiously at 2022. There are still a range of global and macroeconomic concerns associated to the Covid-19 global pandemic (but not only), whereby volatility of markets and of outlook is still very high. Chamroeun will therefore, in 2022, look for qualitative developments first, alongside conservative growth. Key developments will be explored in a range of sectors including water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), in education, renewable energies, agriculture, digitalization and, of course, in a continued refinement of current products and services to help our partner families improve their livelihoods.
Yours sincerely, Yours sincerely,
Mr. Kuroda Takeshi Mr. Yannick Nicolas MILEV
CHAIRPERSON CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER