The Ministry of Commerce has ordered all foreign companies, sole proprietorships, legal entities and branches of foreign companies that engage in the Cambodian e-commerce market to apply for the appropriate licenses or permits by November 30, under penalty of fines, closure or other consequences.

The ultimatum comes after several workshops and other outreach tools organized by the ministry apparently failed to inspire as many e-commerce players to apply as he expected, he said in a statement. release on September 15.

The statement said affected entities can apply directly through, a Khmer-only website hosted by the ministry, or view the terms and conditions, as well as lists of application forms and other documents. required.

This is the latest in a series of measures aimed at ensuring industry compliance with regulatory obligations and instilling public confidence in the use of electronic communication channels, in accordance with the provisions of the Law on e-commerce that the government adopted on November 2, 2019.

The law requires online businesses to register, but provides exceptions for six broad categories of activities.

Ministry spokesman Pen Sovicheat notes that global e-commerce activity has remained on a steady growth path during the pandemic, forcing governments to enforce laws regulating the industry.

Legal registration, for example, will increase consumer confidence, benefit the reputation of business owners and increase tax revenue collection, he told The Post in July.

“Proper registration will strengthen the reputation of business owners, create a great brand identity for the products on sale, attest to the integrity of the services provided and the quality of the products,” Sovicheat said.

The e-commerce activities exempted from registration requirements are – first, advertisements that do not indicate prices of, or do not sell goods directly to services to consumers, and are not the subject of a contract ; second, interactions such as negotiations that do not take a deposit for their services or directly create sales contracts, such as reservation services, according to the manager.

Third, sales of goods or services by individuals or sole proprietorships that do not exceed the lower income threshold of the lowest tax bracket; and fourth, sales by family businesses, temporary or seasonal, such as agriculture, he said.

Fifth, sales of paintings or other works of art; and sixth, the provision of private online lessons, training, workshops or similar educational services, he added.

Cambodian tech and digital companies made $ 470 million in revenue for 2019, according to the Asian Development Bank.

Broken down by industry, e-commerce accounted for 27.6 percent, electronic services 7.8 percent, digital media 10.2 percent, advertising technology 12.7 percent, transportation 3.8 percent and Online travel 37.9 percent, the Metro Manila-based multilateral network said the lender.