Cambodia is a small nation with a population of just over 15 million. At the same time, it has a lot of cities, each for its own sake, and features some great places to buy and invest in real estate. Some cities, such as Cambodia’s capital and largest city, Phnom Penh, are famous for obvious reasons (ie. wartime). Other tourists such as Sihanoukville and Siem Reap attract investors due to the rapid increase in arrivals.
There are also medium-sized cities like Poipet and Battambang where we expect property prices to rise due to Cambodia’s rapid urbanization and population growth. There is very little activity of foreign investors in these cities. But they have more to gain economically anywhere in the country.
Here are some best places to Invest in Cambodia.
With a population of over 3 million and rapidly growing, Phnom Penh is the nation’s bustling capital and center of development. For the most part, anything of business or political significance is in Phnom Penh. Long-distance travellers and Southeast Asians will tell you that Phnom Penh is reminiscent of Bangkok about 30 years ago.
Today, Bangkok is a modern metropolis of 16 million inhabitants, a regional business hub, and the most visited city by tourists in the world. Clever investors should take this as a signal.
Although many people are buying real estate in Singapore or Bangkok, investing in “next Bangkok” or “next Singapore” will probably bring better returns.
Dawn is the main business district (CBD) of Phnom Penh. It is home to the city’s main market and major commercial neighbourhoods, as well as several government offices, the riverfront, and Wat Phnom.
The Phnom Penh Riverfront area has one of the highest property prices not only in Down Penn, but in the entire country. Of course, real estate values are still part of the riverside apartments in Bangkok or Saigon.
Moving west, the tallest buildings in Phnom Penh are in the financial district, which is under construction. They have the potential to resell to major developers at a premium in the future.
Located in the southern part of the city center, Chamkar Moon enjoys some of the highest residential areas in Phnom Penh. The areas referred to as “BKK” are known for their extensive villas, wide selection of fancy restaurants, and high quality international schools.
BKK is also where Avon 1, the largest mall in the city center, is located. Chamkar Moon is fast becoming the most sought-after residential and commercial district in central Phnom Penh.
Chamkar Moon also has Cambodia’s largest casino. Even hotel brands like Shangri-La are currently moving to this part of the city and increasingly benefiting Cambodian tourists.
To the west of both Dawn Pan and Chamkar Moon, further away from the river, 7 Makara is not so central but some predict that this part of the city is where the fame continues. This will be the future expansion of Phnom Penh.
Many cafes are already popping up. International brands such as Krispy Kreme, Burger King, and Crispy Cream are opening their first stores here in the country. You can easily see why 7 makara will be swallowed up from the city center in the next decade. This will increase the values at the city center level.
Angkor Wat is the biggest religious structure in the world. Today, it is one of the most visited destinations in Asia, attracting more than 2 million tourists each year. Sam Rap is located on the edge of Angkor Wat and Cambodia’s second largest city.
Sam Rap will naturally benefit from the increase in tourism in Cambodia. The city’s airport has just undergone a major renovation. He needed one because income is growing by about 10% every year. However, it is very difficult if you are not living in Cambodia. And that’s probably not the best way to invest in a Siem Reap property.
Siem Reap is a great place to meet the middle class local market instead. More yeasts grow as they enter the tourism industry.
Sihanoukville is one of the best places to consider real estate investment in Cambodia.
A four-hour drive from Phnom Penh, the coast and the islands around Sihanoukville boast of some of Southeast Asia’s finest beaches. They are mostly unheard of and often not crowded.
Unknown beaches around Sihanoukville may not last that long and change is already taking place. Rising Chinese foreign investment helped double Sihanoukville property prices between 2016 and 2018.
Even so, you can still buy Asia’s cheapest beachfront and beach view property in Sihanoukville, finding beachfront land for less than 30 $ per square meter in suburbs and islands.
Once you get out of the coastal areas and head east, the original urban area of Sihanoukville is not much to see. But there are also long-term prospects. All of Cambodia’s major real estate markets are benefiting from similar demographic trends.
An excellent example of a fast-growing city, Battambang is located in the center of Cambodia’s most important rice-producing province. It has been a trading center for centuries and still serves as a gateway between Phnom Penh and Thailand. Cambodia’s population and influence are growing at a rate that is rarely seen in the Western world. Although it is a small nation of just over 15 million, its total population should exceed 20 million by 2035 and continue to grow.
These are often small and medium-sized cities that benefit from urbanization as they begin at the base. In less developed cities, you can “make nothing” in the capital the way you couldn’t.
Like Poipet Batttambang, it is closer to the Thai border. It is a second tier city and will benefit from regional trade and urbanization. The difference is that gambling contributes more to the poppy economy than agriculture and markets. Gambling is illegal across the Thai border. Of course, many Thais want to gamble, and Poipet is the closest city to Bangkok where it is possible. Chinese tourist groups are increasingly choosing Cambodia for their gaming adventures. The city’s borders are also growing with population growth. Property investment on the outskirts of Poipet Central should be valued and perform well in the long run.