The total outstanding balance of consumer credit in Cambodia reached $6.7 billion at the end of March – a 7.4 per cent increase from the end of December – the latest report from the Credit Bureau of Cambodia (CBC) said.
The CBC said some 1.14 million Cambodians applied for consumer credit at the end of March, an increase of 5.3 per cent from the end of December.
As of March, non-performing loans after 30 days (NPL 30) reached 1.24 per cent, a slight increase on the 1.18 per cent recorded at the end of December.
“Credit growth is still on the right track. Though the NPL 30 saw a slight increase, it is still at a decent level which implies the good quality of loans and portfolio management from financial institutions,” CBC CEO Oeur Sothearoath said in the report.
He continued that credit card applications saw a drop in the first quarter of this year compared to the previous quarter, which indicates lower demand.
Consumer credit encompasses personal finance loans (51.2 per cent of all outstanding consumer credit loans), mortgages (47.6 per cent) and credit cards (1.1 per cent). Consumer credit outstanding at $6.7 billion accounts for roughly 36 per cent of the total out-standing balance of individual loans in the market.
While the growth in consumer credit was received as a positive sign, industry insiders used the results to warn that the growth of these types of loans should not necessarily be encouraged as most consumer goods in the country are imported. Plus, loans for personal finance and credit cards do not generate economic activity.