Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Report shows China demand will fuel growth of rice exports

Report shows China demand will fuel growth of rice exports

Farmers put harvested rice into a mobile threshing machine in Battambang province in 2015.
Farmers put harvested rice into a mobile threshing machine in Battambang province in 2015. Heng Chivoan

Report shows China demand will fuel growth of rice exports

Cambodia’s rice production and exports will likely continue to grow this year and next year despite low milling rates, buoyed by strong demand from China, according to a report from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

In the report released last week, the USDA forecasted a 4 percent year-over-year increase in rice production during the 2017-2018 harvest seasons, estimating the total haul at 8.1 million tonnes.

Rice in Cambodia is typically harvested twice a year, once during the rainy season in November and December, then again during the dry season beginning in about February or March and typically running through April.

According to the report, this year’s dry season crop had benefitted from favourable weather conditions and had been harvested at a standard pace.

Official rice exports climbed 17 percent to reach 578,000 tonnes during the 2016-2017 harvest season, and the USDA estimated that the next two harvest seasons would see an additional 8 percent increase in exports each year, reaching 622,000 tonnes during the 2017-2018 harvests and 672,000 tonnes in the 2018-2019 harvest season.

Stagnating demand from European countries has been offset by an increase in demand from China, as rice exports to the latter country rose by 57 percent last year.

Additionally, the report notes that Cambodia’s exports only accounted for between 2 and 4 percent of China’s total rice imports last year, suggesting there was a potential for additional growth.

The rice production estimates are similar to those reported by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) last month.

Also included in the FAO report was an estimate that 44 percent of Cambodia’s total rice exports would be smuggled out of the country this year, with total legal and illegal rice exports increasing by 5 percent to reach 1.35 million tonnes of rice.

The USDA did not provide estimates on smuggled or unrecorded rice exports.

MOST VIEWED

  • Hun Sen: Full country reopening to be decided in two weeks

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has announced that if the Covid-19 situation remains stable for 15 consecutive days from the end of the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, Cambodia will reopen fully, albeit in the context of Covid-19 whereby people have to adjust their lives to

  • Cambodia sets new Covid-19 quarantine rules

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Cambodia unveils new quarantine regulations

    The government has modified Covid-19 quarantine requirements, shortening the duration for, among others, Cambodian officials, foreign diplomats and delegations, investors and inbound travellers in general. According to an official notice signed by Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng late on October 16, quarantine length for Cambodian

  • Will Evergrande change the way Chinese developers do business in Cambodia?

    China’s property sector policy has exposed the grim financial condition of real estate developers including those operating in Cambodia, which raises questions over the viability of their projects and business going forward The dark blue netting draping over one of Yuetai Group Co Ltd’

  • Hun Sen: Cambodia set to fully reopen

    Prime Minister Hun Sen concludes that the October 5-7 Pchum Ben public holiday, during which many people either flocked to their hometowns for family reunion or gathered at tourist attractions across the country, has not caused an outbreak of Covid-19. In a special address to

  • Phnom Penh governor: Show Covid-19 vaccination cards, or else

    Phnom Penh municipal governor Khuong Sreng late on October 5 issued a directive requiring all people aged 18 and over and the parents of children aged 6-17 to produce Covid-19 vaccination cards when entering schools, markets, malls, marts, eateries and other business establishments that have been permitted