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Cash and carry bulk wholesaler Makro has made the move to Phnom Penh, adding Cambodia to its fields of operations, which include South Africa, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela, the UK, Belgium, Netherlands and Thailand. In common with its branches in Belgium, Brazil and Thailand, the Phnom Penh branch is open to the general public as well as industry professionals.

The project is a joint venture between Siam Makro, which operates more than 100 Makro stores in Thailand, and Cambodia’s LYP Group Company Limited, run by Ly Yong Phat, which reportedly has put up 30% of the financing.

The company told the Phnom Penh Post that it hopes that its location in the Sen Sok area north-west of Toul Kork will help to lift real estate prices in the area, which is just south of a proposed new Aeon Mall II, and location for dozens of new construction projects for boreys and shopping precincts.

The new store is cited as an indicator of Cambodia’s attractiveness to foreign investors. Speaking to the Post, Ho Vesna, Sen Sok’s deputy district governor, said the opening will be a big event for the neighbourhood. “While developing, this market shows potential to develop the country,” he said. “Besides the large number of Borey constructions, Sen Sok is a potential destination for big brands from abroad.”

Makro told the Post that they are committed to working with local farmers in order to improve products and services for consumers. Speaking to the Khmer Times, Heng Sengly, general manager of local restaurant chain Park Cafe, said that Makro will help increase purchasing options for food and beverage business owners. “The majority of their goods are imported from neighbouring countries, so I am certain we will cooperate with Makro,” he said.