The Cambodian Rice Federation has asked the government to cancel the ban of white rice exports, as soon as possible, so rice mills can clear old stock and pay back debt owed | to consumers.
The request , which will help millers be ready to buy paddy in early July, was made during a meeting on the “current business situation and necessary measures during the outbreak of the COVID-19” between the private sector, Ministry of Economy and Finance and led by Deputy Prime Minister Aun Pornmonirath.
The Federation also requested the government allocate an additional $30 million to the existing $50 million, now totalling approximately $ 200 million, to assist millers in buying around 800,000 tonnes of paddy.
CRF president Song Saran said that the current storage capacity of rice mills in Cambodia is running at 1.9 million tonnes per season, with silo capacity at approximately 45,000 tonnes per day. The CRF president also said, “With the current COVID-19 situation, some of the by-products of rice have been blocked. Rice bran cannot be exported, for example. CRF is also requesting the government exempt the withholding of tax for transport of paddy and milled rice, especially withholding tax on warehoused rents and private truck transport as this has been a burden for the mill-stunted corn.”
He has also asked the government to provide a feasibility study or special policy for rice millers to supply renewable energy, such as solar, which would make production costs for milled rice more competitive as current electricity policies do not. Encouraging each mill to invest this type of energy requires significant leverage and costs. Also, Mr. Saran proposes to promote and invest in the agriculture community through the contract farming mechanism, the Public Private and Producer Partnership.
This article was first published in Khmer Times. All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.