Cambodia-Thai joint venture Power Unity Cambodia Investment Co Ltd planned to export 300,000 tonnes of dry cassava to China this year after the company launched a cassava processing plant in Siem Reap province next month, a company official said.
Hour Seak Pheng, deputy director of the company, told the Post yesterday it had spent about US$600,000 on the joint venture.
It would be the first of its kind in the province, he said.
The plant, which was 90 per cent complete and would be completed in February, would operate on international standards demanded by the Chinese importers, Hour Seak Pheng said.
He said he expected the industry to generate jobs in the region.
“The plant will improve people’s living standards by building a strong cassava market with suitable prices for [locals].”
Som Yin, president of Malai Trading, in Banteay Meanchey province, said he had agreed to supply cassava to Power Unity Cambodia Investment but had not reached a deal.
Domestic processing of cassava, and export to China, would reduce farmer reliance on exporting the raw tuber to Thailand and could stabilise the market, Som Yin said.
“Now we see the cassva price declining, because we are mainly relying on Thailand. So if we have a local company that can export, we’ll be really happy,” he said.
In Seangly, a cassava farmer in the Malai district of Banteay Meanchey, applauded the investment and the potential establishment of a strong local market.
The first-ever shipment of cassava to China would leave the Phnom Penh Autonomous Port on January 15, the Post reported yesterday.
The 3,000-tonne shipment is part of the China National Food Industry Group’s million-tonne order.