Caroline Hughes & Kheang Un (eds)
From 2002, Cambodia underwent a visible economic transformation driven largely by such external factors as increased Chinese demand for primary commodities and a strong international demand for Cambodian garments. Apart from dramatic rates of economic growth, the boom involved the disappearance of forests and the decline of logging, the inflow of Chinese investment and the rise of indigenous capital, and the increased significance of remittances from garment workers and labour migrants. In addition, the impact of government policies on land registration and concessions transformed relations of production and, with them, the socioeconomic and political environment in rural and urban Cambodia. Cambodia’s Economic Transformation examines the political economy of the Cambodian boom, analysing the changing structure of the economy, the relationship between state and market, and outcomes for the poor. Not least, it focuses the role of the state in facilitating and controlling the market, and the way that this has affected the life chances of the poor. In so doing, it situates Cambodian experience within key debates in the wider political economy of Eastern Asia, scrutinizing the relationship between class formation, structures of governance and resource distribution. The analysis also offers a deeper understanding of the nature of the market as it has emerged in Cambodia over the past decade.