The price of cassava products showed improvement in the earlier part of this year, said Reach Ra, Secretary of State of the Ministry of Commerce and Deputy Chairman of the Permanent Working Group of the Inter-Institutional Working Group for Monitoring and Evaluating the Implementation of the National Policy on Cassava 2020-2025.
While presiding over the workshop on ‘Dissemination and Promotion of the Implementation of the National Policy on Cassava 2020-2025’ in Kratie Province, Reach Ra said: “The price of fresh cassava is in the range of 300-500 riel/kg while dried cassava price is between 800-900 riel/kg in early 2023. This price is better than last year.”
The secretary of state said the Kingdom exported around three million tons of various cassava products in 10 months last year.
“In the last 10 months of 2022, Cambodia exported nearly three million tons of dried cassava, cassava flour and cassava waste to international markets, especially Thailand and Vietnam,” he said.
The workshop was conducted in cooperation with the General Promotion of Trade of the Ministry of Commerce and Kratie Provincial Department of Commerce.
It was also attended by Sous Serey Soursdey, Deputy Governor of Kratie Provincial Board of Governors, representatives from inter-ministerial-relevant institutions, local authorities, departments under the provincial administration, processing factories, cassava associations, cassava traders, and farmers in the province.
Reach Ra said the Ministry of Commerce is the Secretariat of the Inter-Institutional Working Group for Monitoring and Evaluating the Implementation of the National Policy on Cassava 2020-2025. He emphasized that a coherent implementation mechanism and in-depth cooperation are indispensable factors to ensure the successful implementation of the policy.
He also pointed out that the Ministry of Commerce recently led negotiations and cooperated closely with various ministries, institutions and the private sector to enter into new free trade agreements.
Last year, Cambodia entered into various free trade agreements, including the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement, Cambodia-China Free Trade Agreement, and Cambodia-Korea Free Trade Agreement.
Meanwhile, Soursdey described the province’s work to implement the policy on cassava. A total of 40 groups comprising 2,522 families cooperated in implementing the cassava production chain. Techniques on seed storage, use of existing raw materials and inspection of pests on crops have also been conducted. Besides, 14 courses on cassava cultivation techniques have been conducted and facilitated the signing of 34 cassava sales contracts between farmers and traders, the deputy governor pointed out.
The workshop observed that there was better momentum and more competition in overseas markets. The participants also gained additional information on new techniques for improving cassava productivity, national technical standards, quality of cassava slices in export, export procedures, import and trade promotion.
The national cassava policy is designed to boost the production and export of cassava products from the country. It was launched by the Ministry of Commerce, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The national policy, which runs until 2025, was developed by the cassava working group and approved by the government on August 14, 2020.
Cambodia is the fourth largest cassava producer in Asia and the tenth largest globally. Over 12 million tonnes of fresh cassava root was harvested this year and the new policy will boost and diversify growth and exports in the coming years, UNDP said, adding that scientists are working to transform cassava into a climate-smart plant that can absorb more carbon from the atmosphere, produce higher yields of starch and help improve soil quality.
This article was first published in Khmer Times. All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.