December 11, 2011

Cambodia's rice yield stable in 2011 despite flood devastation: PM


PHNOM PENH, Dec. 09 -- Cambodia's Prime Minister Hun Sen said Friday the output of rice paddies this year would be at least the same amount as the yield last year even though the recent floods destroyed about 8 percent, or 190,000 hectares of the total rice paddies.

The premier's assertion was made during a meeting with visiting Vietnamese Minister of Agriculture Cao Duc Phat at the Phnom Penh' s Peace Palace.

Cambodia, an agrarian country, produced some 8 million tons of rice paddies last year. Of the figures, the country has 3.9 million tons of rice paddies, in equivalent to 2.5 million tons of milled rice, left over for exports this year.

He said the assessment showed that the rice output this year was stable, so the recent floods had not affected Cambodia's ambition to export 1 million tons of milled rice by 2015.

Cambodia has high potential in agriculture sector, especially rice sector, the premier said, urging the government of Vietnam to help encourage its investors to take advantages of this sector.

Meanwhile, Cao Duc Phat said Vietnam and Cambodia are good neighbors and easy to access to each other, so there are lot of opportunities to cooperate, especially in terms of rubber plantation and rice paddies.

He pledged to encourage more Vietnamese investors to do business in these sectors.

Agriculture is one of the four economic pillars supporting Cambodia's economic growth. The others are garment industry, tourism and construction.

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