Fifty Percent of All Vegetables Are Imported from Vietnam to Meet the Daily Demands – Friday, 11.12.2009

Posted on 12 December 2009. Filed under: Week 642 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 642

“Phnom Penh: About 50% of all vegetables eaten in Cambodia are imported from Vietnam. This is seen from the vegetables at the Deumkor Market in Phnom Penh, the biggest vegetable distribution market.

“The head of the Deumkor Market, Mr. Thong Heng, said that companies licensed by the Ministry of Agriculture mostly import vegetables from the Trapeang Phlong border crossing in Kompong Cham every day with three trucks, carrying 30 tonnes of vegetables each. Another border crossing for imports from Vietnam, that is near and easier, is the Koh Thom district crossing in Kandal. Also, there are special companies, importing vegetables both on land and on water ways.

“Kandal residents said that because too much vegetables are imported from Vietnam, the crops they grow themselves get blocked, and they cannot compete with the cheaper prices of vegetables imported from Vietnam. They stop expanding the land where they cultivate something, and some families abandon their land, because they cannot continue producing economically.

“The head of the Department of Agronomy, Mr. Nouv Ratana, acknowledged this and estimated that vegetables imported from Vietnam amount to 30% to 40% of the daily demands. Most imported vegetable types are those that our Khmer citizens cannot grow in all seasons, like carrots, onions, potatoes, and white cabbage, etc. Moreover, certain crops cannot be grown for different reasons, especially tomatoes, for which the Vietnamese have special techniques to grow them in all seasons. “Mr. Heng Sokhom said, ‘We frequently found that some vegetables have poisonous substances, but before we can identify them clearly at laboratories, the sellers have already sold and distributed them all.’” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5069-5070, 10-11.12.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Friday, 11 December 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #358-359, 10-11.12.2009

  • Eighteen Human Rights Organizations Celebrated the 61st Human Rights Day Successfully [while the Phnom Penh authorities provided security]
  • ADB Provides US$30 Million for the Tonle Sap Basin Development [a loan to find new measures to boost the incomes and the livelihood opportunities of thousands of poor households in the Tonle Sap Basin region]
  • Two Young Sisters [16 and 17 years old] Were Attacked with Acid All over Their Bodies by [two] Unknown Persons [on a motorcycle – Phnom Penh]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2120-2121, 10-11.12.2009

  • Cambodia Received the Agreement [by the member countries of the Ottawa Anti-Landmine Treaty] to Extend the Time to Clear Mines for Ten More Years [in 1991, there were 4,500 square kilometers infested by landmines, at present, there are still 650 square kilometers]
  • [Thai Prime Minister] Abhisit Vijjajiva Must Leave His Office, Dissolve the Parliament, and Conduct New Elections Immediately [demanded thousands of red-shirt demonstrators, supporters of the ousted and convicted for corruption former prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra]
  • The Number of People Infected with A/H1N1 Rose to 487 in Cambodia

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #551-552, 10-11.12.2009

  • The Sam Rainsy Party Appeals to the Government to Be Brave to Recognize Human Rights Violations in Cambodia

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6828, 11.12.2009

  • A Storehouse with Hidden Valuable Kronhoung Wood Worth Tens of Thousands of Dollars Was Intercepted in the Center of Siem Reap
  • The Bodies of two Khmer Citizen Shot Dead on Different Days for Entering to Cut Trees [in Thai territory] Illegally Were Sent Back through the Choam Sagam Border Crossing

Phnom Penh Post [Khmer Edition], Vol.1, #64-65, 10-11.12.2009

  • [Convicted] Thai Spy Decided Not to Appeal while Chavalit Plans to Come to Cambodia
  • The Mother of the Spy Asked [Thai ousted prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra and [Puea Thai Party president] Chavalit to Help Her Son [who was sentenced to serve 7 years in prison for spying, as he copied the flight plan documents of Mr. Thaksin]
  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs Warned Khmer Citizens Not to Enter Thai Territory Illegally
  • IMF: Downturn of Garment Sector and Banking in Cambodia Exist due to their Weak Structures
  • The Call Price Conflict [between different mobile phone service providers] Was Brought to an End [according to a notification signed by the Minister of Post and Telecommunication, Mr. So Khun, and the Minister of Economy and Finance, Mr. Keat Chhon, on Monday: from now on all mobile phone companies are not allowed to charge less than US$04.5 per minute, both call-in and call-out]
  • Cambodia Plans to Create Public Transport Systems [within five more years, in order to reduce traffic jams: bus and sky rail services]

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5069-5070, 10-11.12.2009

  • The International Human Rights Day of 10 December Was Celebrated with Marches and Statements about Human Rights Violations
  • The Senate Marked the 61st International Human Rights Day
  • In Cambodia, There Are More Than 300,000 Enterprises, Employing More Than 1.4 Million Workers [according to the National Institute of Statistics of Cambodia of the of Ministry of Planning]
  • 50% of all Vegetables Are Imported from Vietnam to Meet the Daily Demands

Sereypheap Thmey, Vol.17, #1830-1831, 10-11.12.2009

  • Civil Society: The Fight against Corruption Starts with Independent Courts
  • The European Union Considers Civil Society as an Important Partner to Encourage Cambodia towards More Respect for Human Rights and Democratic Practices
  • Opposition Party, Civil Society, and the United Nations Expressed in Similar Ways that Human Rights Are Being Violated Seriously in Cambodia

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The American Export-Import Bank Provides Financing for Products Being Exported from America to Cambodia – Wednesday, 28.10.2009

Posted on 29 October 2009. Filed under: Week 636 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 636

“Phnom Penh: The American Export-Import Bank of the United States of America announced on 27 October that it will provide financing for the purchase of products from the United States of America to buyers in the private sector in Cambodia, with the condition that the payments back have to be done within a period of seven years.

“This announcement follows a statement by US President Obama from June 2009, saying that Cambodia and Laos were no longer considered as countries following the ideology of Marxism-Leninism, referenced in section 2(b)(2B)(i) of the 1945 law about the American Export-Import Bank, which was amended. Before the decision of the president, the American Export-Import Bank was not allowed to provide any financing related to Cambodia because of this ban. The chairman and president of the American Export-Import Bank, Mr. Fred P. Hochberg, said, ‘President Obama opened a broader way for American companies that export products to Cambodia, and the Export-Import Bank is ready to help those companies. We are glad to announce that our bank will consider to provide short and medium terms financing for buyers of American products in the private sector of the expanding Asian market.’

“Different US agencies, including the American Export-Import Bank, have cooperated with other related agencies to check and assess the business hazards in Cambodia and in Laos, and they assessed also the hazards of doing business with the private sector in Cambodia. Laos remains under observation, and the American Export-Import Bank has not yet been involved in Laos, except for some financial operators, until the assessments finish.

“The American Export-Import Bank operates in Cambodia in the private sector only, to provide short term financing (to be paid back within one year), and medium term financing (to be paid back within seven years) for products exported from the USA. The assistance of the American Export-Import Bank for access to markets is limited to only business operators with commercial banks as legal guarantors. However, the American Export-Import Bank will consider business operations without the involvement of a bank as special cases.

“The American Export-Import Bank might consider also offering financing of products exported from the USA to buyers in the private sector in Cambodia with longer terms under clearly defined conditions. For instance, businesses which can receive financing are financial operations which are organized properly to seek income in foreign countries and have assets in bank accounts which the American Export-Import Bank recognizes, and have income from rent or things mortgaged, or a financing structure to handle goods, like commercial airplanes made in the USA.”As for the funds in 2009, after their financial year that came to an end on 30 September 2009, the amount of money that the American Export-Import Bank approved for financing to assist in the export of goods from the United States, amounts to more than US$21 billion.

“The American Export-Import Bank is the official agency that provides export credits from the USA. This independent and autonomously operating agency within the framework of the the US federal government, now 75 years old, helps to create and to support employment in the USA by providing export financing for US products, especially to new markets around the world, by offering guarantees for export credit and for direct loans.” Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2083, 28.10.2009

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Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Areyathor, Vol.16, #1417, 28-29.10.2009

  • Cambodia Becomes a Member of the World Heritage Committee

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #322, 28.10.2009

  • The Prime Minister Will Leave to Attend the Japan-Mekong Cooperation Meeting [from 6 to 7 November 2009]

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #2083, 28.10.2009

  • The American Export-Import Bank Provides Financing for Products Being Exported from America to Cambodia
  • An Accident Surprised Phnom Penh as Two Military Officials Used Their Guns to Intervene to Release the Driver of the Car which Had Caused an Accident [finally, they were all arrested]

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #518, 28.10.2009

  • The Prime Minister Ordered [the Meanchey district governor] to Sue a Female Gang Leader [who had been involved in a shootout] and Warned to Demote a Lieutenant General Who Had Intervened

Koh Santepheap, Vol.42, #6790, 28.10.2009

  • The Thai Government Deployed Forces to Guard the Cambodian Embassy, as Siamese [Thai] Extremists Demonstrated against [the Cambodian] Support for [the Thai ousted and convicted former prime minister] Thaksin Shinawatra
  • [Five] Crematoriums in the City Were Closed, as a Crematorium Outside of the City Was Opened [at Dangkao district, Phnom Penh]

Phnom Penh Post, Vol.1, #35, 28.10.2009

  • The Prime Minister Warned to Dismiss Any Official Who Protects Juvenile Gang Members

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #5032, 28.10.2009

  • A Foreign Company [Green Cameco, jointly managed by Korea and Australia] Plans to Build A Sky Train in Phnom Penh [from 2011 to 2014, 39 km, worth US$3.6 billion, and also a solar energy power plant – according to a meeting between Green Cameco and the Ministry of Economy and Finance]

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Samdech Dekchor: “To See the Problems Faced by Women Is to See the Apparent Conditions of Women” – Saturday, 7.3.2009

Posted on 11 March 2009. Filed under: Week 602 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Apologies for the delays in publishing – due to my international travel. I try to catch up as soon as possible.

Norbert Klein

The Mirror, Vol. 13, No. 602

“Phnom Penh: The Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Cambodia, Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen, drew the attention of the participants in the Women’s Day 8 March celebration, in the morning of 6 March 2009 at the Chaktomuk conference hall, to the different problems faced by women, by looking at the apparent conditions of women.

“Samdech said that when speaking of the investments for women, this does not refer to the small budget of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs [the full website of the Ministry – http://www.mwva.gov.kh – was not available at the time of the writing]. This means that investments in society include, as a part of such investments also a part for the benefit for women, because every achievement, such as most roads, schools, hospitals, and professional training centers provide advantages also for women. But there are other, separate measures and investments for women, such as legal protection and education for women, for which special investments are needed. Investments for women are also investment for the whole society. To say it simply: to help women is to help ourselves.

“Samdech Hun Sen noticed that recently, Cambodian social morality dropped dramatically and needs urgent actions to be restored and improved, where one action taken by the Cambodian government that is welcomed by women is the closure of gambling sites, as this leads to reduce domestic violence. Some other challenging problems for women is that the number of boys receiving education is higher than that of girls at the high school level of education and at the next higher level of education; the rate of girls dropping out from school is still high, many women are illiterate or have limited access to education, women still encounter obstacles in accessing health care, big gaps between the income of women and men still exist, few women participate in politics in the Royal Government or in private institutions. In addition, actions taken to punish sexual abuses, trafficking of women and children, actions against women’s exploitation and domestic violence are still limited.

“Samdech Dekchor considers these problems to be major concerns of the Royal Government and of all of us, which need to be solved in time.

“Samdech Akkak Moha Senapadei Dekchor Hun Sen instructed all relevant ministries to strengthen law enforcement, especially the laws to crack down on human trafficking and sexual exploitation, to prevent domestic violence, and to protect victims. This work needs urgent decisions, because recently, there were rapes together with cruel murders in some provinces and cities, where the relevant ministers and the local authorities must strengthen law enforcement, and they have the obligation to prevent and to eliminate the culture of violence, particularly violence against women and children, more efficiently, in order to implement the policies of the Royal Government, which is committed to protect the rights and benefits of the citizens and to promote their health and that of the whole society.

“During that occasion, Samdech Dekchor Hun Sen fully supported the policies, strategies, and programs of the third term Neary Ratanak program of the Ministry of Women’s Affairs and the strategic plan for gender mainstreaming at all relevant ministries and institutions, to encourage the equal participation of women in politics with potential, effectiveness, equity, and justice.

Note:

The program Neary Ratanak – Women are precious jewels was initiated by Ms. Mu Sochua, while she was Minister of Women’s Affairs (1998-2004), as a program to promote gender equality. An old Cambodian proverb says, “Man are gold; women are a piece of cloth [if it gets stained, it can never be cleaned” – this is to be changed to “Men are gold. Women are precious jewels.”

“The present Minister of Women’s Affairs, Ms. Ing Kantha Phavi, presented the Third Neary Ratanak program as a five-year strategic plan, which includes: 1. Strategic plan to enhance women’s confidence to participate in the economy, to promote women to make decisions towards good governance, and to change social attitudes and behaviors, to combat violence against women, to reduce maternal mortality, and to promote the health of girls and women. 2. To monitor and report gender distribution in national policies. 3. To monitor and observe the development of gender indicators to be included in policy processes and in national programs, and in different sectors.

“During this year’s 8 March, the United Nations chose a topic about the equality between women and men, responsible for social work including taking care of those who contracted AIDS [actually, the UN slogan for the International Women’s Day for 2009 is Unite to End Violence against Women]. As for Cambodia, the Ministry of Women’s Affairs decided to choose a different topic: Women Involved in Developing Economy and Society.

Ms. Ing Kantha Phavi added that choosing this topic aims to strengthen the participation of women dedicated in 2009 toward the promotion of women’s involvement in the economy and in social task, where women cooperate actively, a key factor affecting the improvement of living conditions, general well being, the status of women, their roles, and the reduction of all types of discrimination against women, which leads to domestic violence, as well as efforts to change social attitudes, to improve social morality, women’s value, and the Khmer family structure.” Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4839, 7.3.2009

Newspapers Appearing on the Newsstand:
Saturday, 7 March 2009

Deum Ampil, Vol.3, #133, 7.3.2009

  • The Government Warns It Will Revoke the Operational License of Daily Lotteries If They Are Not Obeying the Law
  • The Prime Minister Suggests to Organize Classical and Traditional Song Contests while Some Television Stations Almost Forgot Them
  • America Warns It Will Shoot Down North Korean Missiles

Khmer Machas Srok, Vol.3, #359, 7.3.2009

  • [A Sam Rainsy Party parliamentarian]: If There Had Not Been Struggles to Fight the Yuon [Vietnamese] Troops Which Had Invaded Cambodia [to topple the Khmer Rouge regime], There Would Not Have Been a Paris Peace Agreement

Kampuchea Thmey, Vol.8, #1891, 7.3.2009

  • Conference [at the Ministry of Interior]: Police Found That in One Year [2008], There Were More Than 10,000 People Jailed
  • A Customs Official Was Shoot with Many Bullets while He Was Sitting in a Park, Waiting for His Lover [Phnom Penh]

Moneaksekar Khmer, Vol.16, #3705, 7.3.2009

  • The Plan to Abolish the National Congress [by Prime Minister Hun Sen], though It Is Defined in the Constitution, Leads to Criticism that It Is an Act of Elimination of Democracy

Rasmei Kampuchea, Vol.17, #4839, 7.3.2009

  • Samdech Dekchor: “To See the Problems Faced by Women Is to See the Apparent Conditions of Women”
  • Women from Civil Society: Participation of Women in the Society Is Improving
  • Siem Reap Military Police Commander’s Daughter Is Kidnapped during the Day [kidnappers wanted the police to release one of their member who was arrested during the operation, in exchange for the release of the girl – there is no information about money paid]
  • Foreign Investment in Cambodia Is Worth US$11.47 Billion
  • Prison Officials Want Their Salaries to Be Raised and Their Rank Signs to Be Like Those of the Police
  • Thai Investors [from fifteen companies] Seek Markets to Sell Fresh Fruit and Vegetables in Cambodia]

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

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