Cambodia is considering investing in rice production in Cuba to help strengthen the Caribbean Island nation’s capacity to ensure food security, as well as to increase the presence of the Kingdom’s varieties of the stable crop in international markets.
Minister of Agriculture, Forests, and Fisheries Dith Tina revealed the plan during the closing ceremony of a ministry meeting on March 24.
The ministry is conducting feasibility studies for investments in rice cultivation abroad for sale locally, he said, suggesting that other avenues to pave the way for new investment and export opportunities vis-a-vis the selected markets are also being explored.
“The first target will be Cuba, where we’ll ship out short-term rice varieties, to improve the nation’s food security. Ivory Coast is also interested in Cambodian rice types,” he said, without naming specific varieties.
Local Cuban media reports from early 2022 noted that 180,000 tonnes of rice were planned to be produced nationwide that year, a far cry from the 304,000 tonnes yielded in 2018 as well as the estimated 700,000 tonnes needed annually for domestic consumption.
Amru Rice (Cambodia) Co Ltd CEO Song Saran commented to The Post on March 27 that Cuba is a substantial importer of milled rice, and that the minister’s proposal offers exciting new opportunities for the industry, which he said should pique the interest of the Kingdom’s millers and exporters.
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Author: May Kunmakara
Source: The Phnom Penh Post
Publication: 27 March 2023