Civil Society: The US$18 Million Budget Can Only Assist Farmers Indirectly – Saturday, 30.5.2009

Posted on 31 May 2009. Filed under: Week 614 |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 614

“Phnom Penh: A civil society organization which works in agriculture claimed that the US$18 million allocated by the National Assembly as a foundation to assist agriculture and agro-industry can only help farmers indirectly, and some said that it is not oriented into the right direction.

“The president of the Cambodian Center for Study and Development in Agriculture – CEDAC – Mr. Yang Saing Koma, said on 29 May 2009 that the resources allocated by the National Assembly are good news for farmers, but they can only help them indirectly.

“He explained, ‘These resources can only help big enterprises, but there is no direct benefit for farmers.

“Mr. Saing Koma added that farmers might not benefit from them unless they are used to help farmers enhance their ability in doing farming, or to help them technically while the farming season is arriving, and to increase their yields and find specific markets for them. Doing this they will directly gain benefits, but the presently allocted resources can only help them partly.

“Apparently, the resources might be offered in the form of loans by the government to support different enterprises financially, and especially to those related to increase capital to buy rice to store it and other products from farmers for export, after several rice millers had announced that they lack capital to buy rice in the country. However, it was criticized that this measure seems to be somewhat late, because the harvesting season this year has almost finished.

“Mr. Saing Koma said, ‘I think that such a budget should have been adopted since December or January 2008, because so far, the harvesting season has almost passed, but if it is for next year, then it is good.’

“Regarding the adoption of this budget, an official from a farmer association who asked not to be named seems to agree with Mr. Saing Koma; he said that helping mainly big enterprises can only provide jobs to people with low salaries, while obviously about 80% of the farmers in Cambodia still encounter difficulties. He added that if they really want to help farmers, they have to ensure that there is a real market for farmers, and this should be enough.

“He went on to say that so far, 70% to 80% of the local market is occupied by neighboring countries’ products, as farmers are not much cared for directly.

“Related to the market for local products, Phnom Penh is not the only place, but farmers can hardly find markets for their products also at provinces.

“A vegetable vendor in Siem Reap, Mr. Sim Veasy, said that generally, farmers in Siem Reap nowadays say that vegetables for this well-known tourism city are all imported from neighboring countries, and many local farmers cannot produce much vegetables because they do not have the necessary capital.

“He added, ‘The 10 tonnes of vegetables in Siem Reap are all imported, while most Khmer farmers have only one basket of vegetables to sell.’” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4907, 30.5.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 30 May 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #198, 30.5.2009

  • Parliamentarian Ho Vann [of the Sam Rainsy Party] Is Summoned to Court over a Complaint Filed against Him by [22] Military Officials [for defamation – he had questined the academic value of the degrees they had received from Vietnam, but later he apologized already]
  • The Garment Manufacturers Association of Cambodia Will Observes the US$400 Million Provided by the Government to Assist the Garment Sector [but it is hard to know the real amount available for the garment industry]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1957, 30.5.2009

  • AIDS Officials Are Concerned about a Second Wave of HIV in Cambodia [if there is no clear strategy how to implement the fight against AIDS]
  • Four Men Are Arrested for Smuggling Drugs [in Kratie]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #414, 30.5.2009

  • Sam Rainsy Party and Human Rights Party Parliamentarians Walk Out of the Meeting [of the National Assembly about the adoption of a draft about the protection and promotion of disabled people, because the president of the National Assembly, Mr. Heng Samrin, had not announced the draft amendment to them before the meeting]

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6663, 30-31.5.2009

  • The Provinces of Kampot and of Kien Giang [Kiên Giang of Vietnam] Set Up 13 Border Markers [and inaugurated a new border crossing: Ton Hon-Yang Tanh [[phonetic]] ]

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3771, 30-31.5.2009

  • Civil Society League Gathers for a Concert to Encourage the Adoption of an Anti-Corruption Law Soon [the Clean Hands Concert will be organized at the Olympic Stadium in the evening of 30 May 2009]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4907, 30.5.2009

  • Civil Society: The US$18 Million Budget Can Only Assist Farmers Indirectly
  • Compensation for [the burning of] the Preah Vihear Market: Thai Minister of Foreign Affairs Says They Wait for the Results of an Investigation First
  • Ms. Aung San Suu Kyi’s Issue Was Raised during the ASEAN-European Union Meeting [during the meeting, the Burmese deputy-minister of foreign affairs suggested to the ASEAN ministers of foreign affairs and especially to the European ministers of foreign affairs to understand, and not to intervene into the internal affair of Burma]
  • A Well-Known Construction Company of Japan [Tama Home – タマホーム株式会社 – capital base roughly US$8 million] Comes to Invest in Cambodia
  • Cambodia Asks for Hundreds of Millions of Dollar from China [according to a Cambodian delegation from the Ministry of Economy and Finance, Cambodia asked China to provide more than US$1.3 billion to support the development of different sectors]
  • Hungary Cancels Half of Cambodia’s Debt and the Remaining Will Be Turned into Aid for Development Cooperation [at least US$216,659 – the total debt was roughly US$400.000]

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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