Cambodia Misses Target of Exporting 1m Tons of Rice

Cambodia has failed to hit its target of exporting one million tons of rice due to a lack of processing basics
A worker carries a pack of rice at a store in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/Siv Channa
A worker carries a pack of rice at a store in Phnom Penh. Kiripost/Siv Channa

Hun Sen said on Monday Cambodia has not been successful in exporting one million tons of rice because of a lack of processing basics, including rice mills, dry ovens, and capital.

At the graduation ceremony for students of the National Technical Training Institute, the Cambodian Prime Minister said, ​“Today we have rice that has not been fully processed yet. Last year, we had 6.6 million tons of un-milled rice (4.2 million tons of milled rice), which is in excess of demand.

“ Rice production policy and rice exports. We succeeded in only one of the two. We have enough rice to eat and to be a country with a rice emperor, but we did not succeed in exporting one million tons. We exported 500,000 to 600,000 tons only,” Hun Sen said.

“Because we lack the basis of processing, which is related to rice mills, dryers, and capital as well, we need to reduce capital so owners of rice mills have enough capital to buy from farmers, then prevent the fall in price’s rice by helping intervention for rice mill​ owners to buy from farmers,” he added.

The head of Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF), Chan Sokheang, said in the last seven years, Cambodia has exported between 640,000 and 680,000 tons of rice per year.

“We have exported more than 600,000 tons of mill rice, but we have exported up to 3.5 million tons of un-milled rice to neighboring countries.”

According to CRF’s report, for January 2023, Cambodia exported 36,900 tons of milled rice valued at $28.83 million to 34 destinations, of which 20 were to European countries receiving 17,795 tons worth $13.44 million, or equal to 48 percent of the total export of Cambodian milled rice.

Meanwhile, 41 percent was exported to China and Hong Kong, receiving 15,045 tons worth $11.77 million.

Cambodia also exported to two ASEAN countries - Malaysia and Singapore - with a volume of 1,871 tons worth $1.09 million and to seven other countries - Gabon, the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Russia, and Saudi Arabia - receiving 2,189 tons worth $2.53 million.