Real estate agents to be licensed
KHMER TIMES/SUM MANET WEDNESDAY, 01 FEBRUARY 2017
[Khmer Times] While properly licensed real estate agents in Cambodia face challenges and competition from brokers who are not licensed, moves are now underway to not only make the sector more professional and reliable, but to increase the numbers of recognized brokers in Cambodia’s booming real estate sector.
Century 21 Cambodia signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the University of Economics and Finance (UEF) yesterday, aimed at strengthening the real estate sector’s human resources by getting those involved licensed and making them more professional.
Kuy Vat, the chairman and CEO of Century 21 Cambodia, said the main purpose of the deal with the university is to create one professional and recognized standard in the real estate sector through training as well as providing licenses for property agents or companies certified by the Ministry of Economy and Finance.
“With the training course, real estate agents and companies will get real estate knowledge professionally that can compete with other Asean countries with more experience in real estate, as well as with the Asia-Pacific region,” Mr. Vat said.
“The training course will help all real estate agents with licenses become recognized by local and international customers because all the agents will be required to have ethics, discipline and professionalism,” he said.
“However, for those who do not do business with such things as ethics, discipline and professionalism, their licenses will be confiscated.
“The license will be vital for building confidence with customers in the real estate sector,” he added.
Chuon Rattanak, the rector of UEF, said Cambodia has seen strong growth in its property sector, but he added that this sector needs more human resources as it is growing very quickly.
“We are cooperating with Century 21 Cambodia in order to increase the capacity in the real estate sector and to develop human resources, as well as the national economy,” Mr. Rattanak said.
Kim Heang, the president of the Cambodian Valuers and Estate Agents Association (CVEA), said this will help strengthen knowledge about the real estate sector for its members and help them compete locally and internationally.
“The focus on is training human resources related to the property sector. We need to start training courses and cannot wait any longer,” he said.
“For Asean countries like Singapore, Malaysia and Brunei, as well as Hong Kong, America and European countries, they all have a license system for doing business in this sector.
“So this is the time for Cambodia to create such a system.”
Mey Van, the director-general of the Financial Industry General Department at the MEF, said licensing real estate agents will help to reduce the number of property brokers who are not professional and lack knowledge about the sector.
“We think the property agents have to be recognized throughout the country,” Mr. Van said. “However, we have a lot of unofficial training related to the property sector.
“Now we are opening a new page for real estate training – it’s like starting from primary school and the initiative leads directly to the international level,” Mr. Van.
According to an official report released yesterday by the Ministry of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction (MLMUPC), the investment capital in this sector had reached about $8.5 billion this year, compared with $3.3 billion in 2015, an increase of 155.5 percent and with a construction area of 13 million square meters.
From 2000 to 2016, foreign investment amounted to 791 projects from five floors tall and 134 borey projects, the equivalent to more than 13 million square meters and a total investment of $8.5 billion from 18 countries.
Most of the new construction involves large commercial buildings, office buildings, shopping malls, condominiums, apartments, factories and enterprises.