September 22, 2011

Feeding the farming sector


CP CambodiaCo Ltd vice-president Wittaya Kreangkriwit
FEED mill enterprise CP Cambodia Co, whose Thai parent Charoen Pokphand Group is one of the biggest firms in that country, entered the Cambodian market nearly two decades ago. The company produces food products, feed for farm animals as well as livestock.

On Tuesday, Post reporter Rann Reuy interviewed CP Cambodia vice-president Wittaya Kreangkriwit on the progress of agricultural investment in Cambodia.

Having been in Cambodia more than 10 years, what do you think about future business opportunities here?
From my perspective, investment in Cambodia has potential for agriculture because [Cambodia] has qualifying land and our future target is exporting our products to sell abroad.

Cambodia has rich water resources with tremendous natural water lines. In a nutshell, Cambodia has more chance than other countries.

What should the government do to help the agricultural sector develop?
The government has to support the agricultural sector so that foreigners will come and  invest in it.

Another aspect is banking. I think some farmers living off farming have to co-operate with banks and companies. When this kind of co-operation exists, we have to train our farmers to expand the agricultural sector. Then both raising animals and cultivat-ion will be more progressive.

How many farmers are involved with CP?
We calculate by the family unit, and [we have] hundreds of thousands of families.

Here, we are talking about families involved in agricul-ture, but if we talk about business involvement with the CP company, we can count half  the country’s population, because CP is a maker of animal feed and foods.

Sichuan New Agribusiness  recently opened in Cambodia. Is the sector becoming too competitive?
This is a free market, and the market is the freest for investors. This means that if businesses come here to invest, it’s good, because nowadays Cambodia still makes inadequate food products. If they come here to help produce, those products will be competitive in quality and those benefiting most are farmers.

CP Group has also put up the biggest amount of capital to invest in hundreds of factories in China. This is normal for the free market.

Providing investors with opportunities is beneficial, because we are competitive on product quality – and that means it’s good for consumers.

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