Caution: Work Ahead

Émile Coué was a French psychologist who introduced a method of self-improvement based on optimistic autosuggestion. “Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better,” was his mantra. He died in 1926 and probably never visited Cambodia, but his spirit has been hovering over the four-year-long preparation for the Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX).​​​ ​​​​ When the Korea Exchange (KRX) first signed a joint-venture agreement with the Cambodian Economy and Finance Ministry in 2007, both parties announced operations would begin by 2009. After several delays the CSX opened last month, eventually sending a clear and positive ‘we are open for business’ message to all Cambodian firms who contemplate opening their capital to the public. However, the financial community will need to practice the Coué method a little longer. Actual stock trading has not started yet because the Phnom Penh Water Supply Authority (PPWSA), the Sihanoukville Autonomous Port and Telecom Cambodia – the first three companies expected to list – need more time to prepare their initial public offerings (IPOs). Officials from the last two have reaffirmed their commitment to stick to the deadline for the end of this year, but PPWSA has yet to confirm a date. Here, four experts share their views on the future of the CSX and what it will take to make it a success.