Cambodia’s new e-commerce law is on the verge of becoming a reality. Recently Cambodian Ministry of Commerce announced that the 90 articles long act is being finalized and should be presented for parliamentary review in the course of next year. Grounds to e-commerce regulations in the region were set by the e-ASEAN Framework Agreement from 2000 in which the member countries pledged to enact measures regulating e-commerce, and additionally encouraged by Cambodian membership in WTO in 2004. Still, in 2016 Cambodia remains the last ASEAN country not to have enacted e-commerce law.
Efforts to bring drafting to an end increased last year, when the draft of the law was presented to the public at the event hosted by the British Chamber of Commerce, where necessity of the acceleration of the legislative process was set out, in light of the regional harmonization efforts and increasing needs of local businesses. Indeed, in the modern integrated economy in which an ever expanding proportion of trade is done online, a piece of legislation governing e-commerce is no longer an optional tool, but an essential mechanism for the development of the Cambodian economy. The new act would also bring protection to consumers when it comes to e-contacts and online payments, as Cambodia remains also the last ASEAN country without consumer protection act.