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China mulls importing Kingdom’s agri-products

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Workers at a Longmate Agriculture-owned banana farm in Kampot province’s Chhouk district on Saturday. Heng Chivoan

China mulls importing Kingdom’s agri-products

China is considering importing more Cambodian agricultural products following recent agreements to import mangoes and bananas, said Li Jianwei, the director-general of the Animal and Plant division of China’s General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine.

On Thursday, China signed an agreement with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to import Cambodian mangoes, while last year it allowed the Kingdom to export bananas to the Chinese market.

On Saturday, Jianwei visited Longmate Agriculture Co in Kampot province’s Chhouk district to inspect technical and phytosanitary standards.

Phytosanitary certificates are issued to indicate that consignments of plants meet specified standards for the control of plant diseases.

Jianwei said that in all circumstances, the Chinese government supports and encourages the Cambodian government’s efforts to develop the country and promote people’s livelihoods.

“We will continue to further examine Cambodia’s proposal to export more agricultural products to our market,” she said.

Jianwei said the agricultural products Cambodia has requested to export include Kampot pepper, longan fruit from Pailin, honey pineapple, fragrant coconut and edible birds’ nests.

She said China imports more than 10 million tonnes of agricultural products annually from countries around the world.

Hun Lak, the director of Longmate Agriculture, which is currently planting bananas on more than 400ha of a total of 1,000ha of cultivated land, said the company would expand to 100 per cent of its cultivated land by the end of 2020.

“In the first quarter of this year, our company has exported more than 100 tonnes of bananas to the Chinese market, and we expect that our exports will reach over 2,000 tonnes for the whole of this year,” he said.

Lak said the company has more than 900 employees in the banana sector, while some 30 skilled workers have been sent to study growing, harvesting and packing techniques in China.

“The export of agricultural products to major international markets such as China not only depends on the quantity and quality of our commodities but requires proper packing according to technical standards as well.

“Moreover, we must have processing and packaging factories and also conform to standards for properly stocking and trading in the foreign markets,” he said.

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