By Sok Lak
The China National Food Industry (Group) company and Cambodia’s Le Ye Rubber on August 13 signed Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation agreement to acquisition of one million cassava production export from Cambodia to China
The cooperation agreement was signed between Cai Yong Feng, President of China National Food Industry Group and Gao Hong Zhi, CEO of Le Ye Rubber under presided by H.E. Kit Seng, undersecretary of State for Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
Cai Yong Feng, said that Cambodia-China bilateral cooperation in cassava are highly complementary. China is the biggest consumer of cassava which imported more than 8 million tons last year including 6.5 million tons from Thailand and 1.6 million from Vietnam, but has no import from Cambodia. “The company hopes to cooperate with Cambodia to export to break the record in Cambodia.”
He stressed that recently he led a delegation to visit Cambodia to meet Minister of Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry and other government department to study about port, transportation, cassava cultivation, processing, storage and inspection of cassava. “As the first step, we will export one million cassava. If there has no problem, the processing will start at the end of this year.”
Kith Seng, Undersecretary of State for the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fishery, said the Royal Government of Cambodia fully supported the agreement between the two companies. “I believe that the two companies will be successful promote cassava export from Cambodia to China in order to contribute the development of agriculture sector as well as the country economy.”
“It is good step toward the development of cassava crop in Cambodia,” he added.
He stressed that Cambodia’s population is 14 million people in which 80 percent of them engaged in agriculture production and the agriculture accounted 30 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the country so that agriculture take important role in development country.
After the war is fully end in 1995, the Royal Government of Cambodia implement a series of agricultural development policy which finally achieved the goal of basic need of people in country. Since 1999, the annual output of rice is surplus so that the government encourages exporting rice to support rice processing industry in Cambodia to promote foreign investment and export the rice in country.
According to data, Cambodia yielded 3.78 million tons of cassava last year.
Currently, Cambodia has an ethanol factory which is an investment by a South Korean Company in Kandal province and has organized to buy cassava product from local farmers. But the supply from local farmers is still potential while the price of cassava product goes up, local farmers will push to grow more of the cassava product. Now, a kilo of cassava product costs half dollar.
Source: The Southeast Asia Weekly, August 21-27, 2011, Vol. 5, Issue 34, Page 3