Regional Economic Development Programme IV

Project description

Title: Regional Economic Development Programme IV (RED IV)
Commissioned by: Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
Country: Cambodia
Lead executing agency: Council for the Development of Cambodia (CDC)
Overall term: 2018 to 2021


According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the poverty rate in Cambodia has fallen sharply in recent years – from 53 per cent in 2004 to 13.5 per cent in 2016. However, the financial situation of the people living there can deteriorate rapidly at any time as a result of heavy rainfall or drought, financial pressures such as medication expenses, or rising debt.

The equal economic and political participation of women helps to improve the situation and increase family income. Women therefore need better access to resources and services. 


The economic and employment situation of disadvantaged rural households in selected provinces of Cambodia is improved.


On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ),  the project promotes local value chains for rice, vegetables and manioc – especially in areas where producers previously had virtually no access to local, regional or international markets. The promotion of a local market in Chong Kal in Oddar Meanchey Province has given numerous families an opportunity to find new customers for their vegetables. 
In the provinces of Banteay Meanchey, Oddar Meanchey, Preah Vihear and, to a lesser extent, in Siem Reap, producers from poor, socially disadvantaged households or families that include people with a disability attend training courses to learn about sustainable cultivation and processing methods. To promote marketing and distribution, they connect with service providers, dealers and processing enterprises. 

Together with partners from the public and private sector, jointly developed economic promotion projects are implemented at local level. Artisanal activities and vegetable production have proved particularly beneficial to women, as they can usually be performed close to home. The programme supports the Siem Reap Beyond The Temples initiative in the province of Siem Reap, which is aimed at developing new tourism products and destinations besides the Angkor Wat temples and involves producers and service providers from local villages in particular. 

Formats for dialogue involving representatives from state and administration, civil society, private companies and producer initiatives help the target groups exploit their potential more effectively and overcome barriers to markets. This is because when the rural population is involved in local economic development, income rises, and the employment base becomes more diversified. This enhances security and resilience in the event of crises, which can arise at any time, for example, due to the perceptible effects of climate change.

The programme also helps selected representatives from public administration to create the right conditions for local economic promotion. They acquire the expertise and skills required for efficient, transparent public services. This helps district authorities to plan and implement economic development projects, together with civil society, non-governmental organisations and business representatives.

In the interests of the sustainable development goals, the project includes people with disabilities, to enable them to become economically independent.