Opening a bank account in Cambodia: An overview
Cambodia is making up for the backlog of delays it has amassed over time. Its economy is expanding, and the banking industry has seen a significant increase in competition. Due to the expansion of the tourism, textile, agricultural, construction, and real estate industries, the main international financial institutions instantly expected growth. Despite being in a growing phase, Cambodia's economy benefits greatly from being a full member of the ASEAN Economic Community. Due to this country's strategic location for import-export trade, it is quite expected that economic growth will continue in the years to come.
Considerations to keep in mind when choosing a bank?
In Cambodia, all banks offer a wide range of services. When selecting a bank, there are a few things to keep in mind because some may provide services that other banks do not. So before opening a bank account in Cambodia, kindly keep the following elements in mind:
- Access to loans or trade financing;
- Bank reputation;
- Minimum deposit requirements;
- Monthly charges;
- Characteristics of online banking;
- The services and facilities provided;
- Interest rates.
Money in Cambodia: USD, Riel, or Euro?
The Riel, which is used in Cambodia, is the country's official currency; $1 is roughly equal to 4000 Riels. The US dollar, however, is used less frequently and is only accepted in major towns, not in communes located outside of them.
Although the Euro is rarely used in Cambodia, the conversion is quite simple. Although the rates are appealing, be cautious when dealing with the black exchange because you may face the danger of dealing with individuals who may not always act in good faith.
You will receive the bank card for your account when you open a local bank account. By opening a bank account in Cambodia, you will be able to make all of your purchases more efficiently and worry-free for restaurants, stores, and grocery shopping. Charges made with a bank card in Asia, including Cambodia, are subject to an extra fee of 3 per cent of the total amount.
Advantages of opening a bank account in Cambodia
Following are some of the advantages that one may enjoy after opening a bank account in Cambodia:
Foreign nationals may also open US currency accounts:
Accounts may be opened for foreigners, including Japanese citizens, with the major banks in Cambodia. You will be able to manage your assets in US dollars while maintaining an offshore account.
You can make a high-interest rate US dollar-denominated time deposit:
When you use time deposits, you may gradually increase your US dollar assets with an annual deposit rate of at least 6 per cent.
Issuance of cards with debit card function:
Each bank offers a variety of debit cards from international brands like VISA, MASTER, etc. This will allow you to shop or withdraw money anywhere in the world.
Online banking that accepts international transfers:
You may monitor transaction information and account balances via online banking from anywhere, and you can also send money worldwide.
The time deposit can be cancelled at any moment without incurring any fees:
Essentially, no bank in Cambodia levies a fee for mid-time deposit cancellation. Your savings account's interest rate will be used if you cancel.
After opening an account, Cambodia does not require any tax procedures:
The mechanism for withholding tax in Cambodia is the same as that in Japan. You won't need to go through any formalities on your own or submit a tax return in Cambodia since the bank will collect the interest when you deposit the money. Interest is taxed at a rate of 6 per cent for residents and 14 per cent for non-residents.
Corporate bank account for a Cambodian company
A newly formed business in-country must open a bank account in Cambodia and provide the General Department of Taxation (GDT) evidence of the account's existence. Within 15 business days after the day the firm registers with the GDT, this proof—in the form of a letter from the bank—must be delivered to the GDT.
Requirements for opening a business bank account
The following documents are necessary to open a bank account in Cambodia:
- Company incorporation certificate
- The constitution or the articles of incorporation (Memorandum of Association & Articles of Association)
- Registration of tax patents and VAT registration
- Identification (ID, passport, and visa) of shareholders or signatories
Process of opening a corporate bank account
In order to open a corporate bank account in Cambodia, you must follow these steps:
- If a director is on hand in Cambodia to sign all the paperwork, the bank account opening process may be completed relatively fast. If not, the procedure gets a bit harder but is still manageable, thanks to the local licenced agent.
- An approved representative who resides in Cambodia is a requirement for any company doing business there. The approved representative can be designated to open the company's bank account if there are no directors of the firm present in Cambodia.
- The official signatory in Cambodia must be the authorised representative. However, the business may manage the activity on the bank account from abroad using an authentication token or a smartphone app that creates a code required to approve any online banking activities.
- The company's directors must adopt a resolution designating the approved representative before they may create a bank account on their behalf.
- The bank often requests to see the original signed copy of the resolution as part of the account opening procedure. The account can then be opened by the approved representative signing all the required paperwork.
- The account may be opened relatively quickly, often within one to two days, once all the necessary paperwork have been sent to the bank.
How to set up corporate bank accounts for offshore entities?
Some banks in Cambodia will open an account for an offshore entity even if that entity doesn't have a physical presence locally. However, the procedure to open offshore bank account in Cambodia is rather difficult.
The local bank must do extensive KYC (know-your-customer) checks on the offshore firm.
The following papers will be needed:
- Company incorporation certificate
- M&A or a constitution of the company
- A copy of the company's shareholders and directors as listed in the local country's companies register
- Copies of the directors of the business and the account signers' passports
- Depending on the ownership structure, information on the shareholders, and supporting documentation
All of these papers must be notarized in the nation where the offshore entity resides. Depending on the bank the business is working with, notarization of the account opening forms may also be necessary.
The Cambodian bank must then get the original notarized paperwork. Additional notarization in Cambodia can also be necessary.
Card fees for ex-pats to settle and live in Cambodia
Whatever you’re motivation for being in Cambodia — studying, working, or perhaps planning to retire there—you have realised that the easiest way to make your everyday transactions easier is to open an account with a local bank. The administrative procedures are simple and have even been made more streamlined to allow everyone to participate without restriction. As long as you have control over things like how you manage your finances in the simplest way possible, it would help if you did not take it for granted. Since your money is secure and you won't have to pay high fees for different banking activities, you will be able to concentrate on your social integration, business, or academics.
Operating the bank account
In general, Cambodian banks have embraced digital banking, and their technology is of the highest calibre. Through an authentication token or a smartphone application, banking transactions may be initiated and approved online. Therefore, you may authorise transactions in your Cambodian bank account from a distance.
The associated costs change according on the bank, services, and features provided. Each bank will maintain a fee schedule outlining all applicable charges, which may include:
- Setup costs;
- Fees for a minimal deposit;
- Credit card charges;
- Charges for the international transfer;
- Fees for ATM withdrawals;
- Fees for early closure;
- Fees for chequebooks;
Charges for online banking.