Cambodian Rice Encounters Problems Competing at International Markets because of Price Problems – Friday, 22.5.2009

Posted on 24 May 2009. Filed under: Week 613 |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 613

“Phnom Penh: The president of the National Rice Millers Association of Cambodia said that the market for Cambodia rice is facing a crisis competing with neighboring countries, because the price of rice from other countries is cheaper than that from Cambodia.

“The president of the National Rice Millers Association of Cambodia, Mr. Tes Etda, said on 20 May 2009 that so far, the price of Cambodian rice is much higher than that of neighboring countries, especially of Vietnam.

“He said, ‘At international markets, the price of rice from Vietnam is much better than that from Cambodia.’

“Thus far, the price of normal quality rice that Vietnam sells is only US$390 per tonne, while Cambodian companies cannot sell their rice unless the price is over US$440. This high price is not because of its higher quality. The different prices for sale of both countries are due to internal affairs of each country.

“Mr. Etda went on to say that rice with the same quality, but with different prices, is a significant obstacle for Cambodia on international markets. But this is because the prices of local products are always high, and to be able to export, there are many legal steps to follow, a lot of kickbacks have to be paid, and moreover, our exporters seem not to agree with each other.

“He emphasized, ‘If we cannot first lower the price, exports from Cambodia will have market problems in the future.’

“The fact that the export of rice from Cambodia is facing a crisis like this has some negative consequences for farmers who have asked for loans from different micro-finance institutions to improve their farming, regarding the repayment of loans to those institutions, while the price of their agricultural products declines continually as the export encounters problems.

“An association in Prek Kunlong village, Kompong Tralach commune, Kompong Chhnang, told Radio Free Asia on 19 May 2009 that in the association, many villagers face demands from staff of six or seven micro-finance institutions and private banks, who urge them to sell their property in order to repay the loan that they had asked for from those institutions to invest in agriculture, when, unfortunately, now they cannot sell their agricultural products, or the prices of their products drop.

“They said that last year a bag of fertilizer of 50 kg was below Riel 120,000 [approx. US$30] and a kilogram of paddy rice was sold for Riel 1,200 [approx. US$0.30], but this year, the chemical fertilizer is cheaper, only Riel 1,000 per bag, but the price of paddy rice is 40 to 50 percent cheaper than last year.

“Regarding this problem, the president of Cambodian Microfinance Association, Mr. Huot Eng Tong, told Rasmei Kampuchea by telephone in the evening of Wednesday that what they claimed is not true.

“He recognized that recently, customers of different micro-finance institutions in Cambodia are late in repaying, but their percentage is very small, and those institutions do not order their staff to demand money from villagers as it is said above. Moreover, among more than one million costumers of micro-finance institutions, only 20% ask for loans to invest in agriculture.

“He emphasized, ‘Out of 100 costumers, we receive late repayments from one or two costumers only.’” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4900, 22.5.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 22 May 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #191, 22.5.2009

  • [Thailand’s army chief General] Anupong Paochinda [อนุพงษ์ เผ่าจินดา] Arrives at the Contested Area at the Preah Vihear Temple and Khmer Army Commanders Greet Him as Guest [to negotiate, to avoid armed clashes, and to develop the border region]
  • The Plan to Cut Down Fuel Supply at Ministries and Departments Is Being Implemented [according to an official of the Ministry of Information, for heads of departments and downwards, the fuel allowance for each official will be reduced by 10%, so that they will receive 20 to 30 liter only per month]
  • Samdech Hun Sen Confirms Supporting the Monarchy through the Generations of His Family [his father supported the monarchy, so does he, and he advised his children to do the same]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1950, 22.5.2009

  • The National Election Committee Dismissed Complaints of the Opposition Party against the Cambodian People’s Party for Buying Votes [for there is insufficient evidence]
  • Samdech Hun Sen Accused Some Non-Government Organizations to Be Biased towards the Opposition Party [he said that when the Cambodian People’s Party required its members to swear – though not a life-and-death oath – the party was criticized by non-organizations, but when the opposition party required its members to swear a life-and-death related oath, they did not criticise the opposition party]
  • Cambodia Supports the Release of Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi [Burmese elected democracy leader – according to the spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Mr. Koy Kuong]
  • A Strike [conducted by nearly 2,000 workers] Occurs in the Morning at the Sangwoo Garment Factory and Workers Demand 22 Working Conditions to Be Implemented [by the factory owner – Kompong Speu]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #408, 22.5.2009

  • Hun Sen Allows District/Province/City Councilors to Have Weapons [a short gun with two magazines of bullets for self defense]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6656, 22.5.2009

  • The Cambodian People’s Party Receives 352 Votes from [commune] Councilors of Other Parties [claims Prime Minister Hun Sen]
  • Iran Tests Its Missile Which Can Go 2,000 km

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4900, 22.5.2009

  • Cambodian Rice Encounters Problems Competing at International Markets because of Price Problems
  • Samdech Hun Sen Will Speed Up Border Negotiations when the Thai Prime Minister Arrives in Cambodia
  • An African Country [Guinea-Conakry] Agrees to Buy 2,000 Tonnes of Rice from Cambodia [worth US$700,000]

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.16, #1723, 22-23.5.2009

  • The Military Situation at the Preah Vihear Temple Became Tense Again as the Number of Khmer and Siamese [Thai] Para Solders Increased at the Ou Chak Chraeng Region where an Armed Clash Almost Happened Recently
  • The Head of the UN Human Rights Forum Warned Representatives of the Yuon [Vietnamese] Government for Using Words Looking Down on Khmers in the Khmer Krom Region

Have a look at the last editorial – you can access it directly from the main page of the Mirror.

And please recommend us also to your colleagues and friends.

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