Cambodian Economy: Charting the Course of a Brighter Future

The overthrow of Prince Sihanouk by the Lon Nol coup d’état on March 18, 1970, plunged Cambodia into the horrors of war, genocide, and unbrid violence. The two decades that followed dramatically transformed the society and economy of Cambodia. The seizure of power by the Khmer Rouge on April 17, 1975 set Cambodia on course of genocide and self-extermination of its people. Cities were evacuated, hospitals emptied, schools closed, factories shut down, currency abolished, monasteries sealed off, and libraries destroyed. Life in Cambodia remained this way for three years, eight months, and twenty days. Cambodia’s human resources were decimated. The Cambodian people were first kidnapped and then besieged. The Khmer spirit was broken; its points of reference vanished.

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