Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Grow Asia targeting six local cash crops

Grow Asia targeting six local cash crops

A farmer throws harvested cassava root onto a pile in Battambang province in 2011.
A farmer throws harvested cassava root onto a pile in Battambang province in 2011. Heng Chivoan

Grow Asia targeting six local cash crops

Grow Asia, which formally launched a partnership with Cambodia late last year, will reconvene on June 13 in Phnom Penh to kick-off working groups between the public and private sector, including NGOs, after targeting six crops for market potential.

The Grow Asia program is a multi-stakeholder partnership that aims to promote inclusive agricultural growth amongst ASEAN member states. The organisation is backed by the World Economic Forum (WEF) and has partnered with Cambodia’s Agriculture Ministry and the World Bank.

Jenny Costelloe, Grow Asia’s director of country partnerships, confirmed yesterday that the organisation would focus on six crops: rice, cassava, coconut, palm sugar, pepper and vegetables.

“We believe that Cambodia is a very fertile place and Grow Asia will promote the private sector by bringing in multinational corporations,” she said. “This allows for Cambodia to engage with the region and for companies to commit to purchase agreements.”

She added that Grow Asia seeks to build a long-term strategic cooperation that brings together the government and stakeholders.

“The next step is to meet on June 13 to launch the working groups,” she said.

Grow Asia does not provide lending or grants. Its purpose is to give Cambodia greater market access to the region, she said.

The Grow Asia partnership platform has set a goal of reaching 10 million farmers in the ASEAN region, and increasing profitability by 20 per cent by 2020. Currently, Grow Asia is active in Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Myanmar and has 100 members and 65 companies.

At the World Economic Forum on ASEAN, Prime Minister Hun Sen applauded the benefits that Grow Asia will reap by meeting farmers’ needs for access to markets.

Meas Pyseth, director of department of the international cooperation of the Ministry of Agriculture, said that prioritising six crops with a multi-team effort would promote the Kingdom’s agricultural sector.

He added that while the Ministry of Agriculture had made notable achievements, its effectiveness remained limited.

“Grow Asia has the experience with the Agriculture sector, and understands which crops are required for the market. As long as the organisation has a large network across the country, we can promote both the domestic market and international exports,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Angkor Wat named as the top landmark for the second year

    Travel website TripAdvisor has named Cambodia’s ancient wonder Angkor Wat as the top landmark in the world for the second year running in their Travelers’ Choice Award 2018, an achievement Cambodian tourism operators expect will attract more tourists to the Kingdom. The website uses traveller

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman

  • Hun Sen detractors ‘will die’

    Prime Minister Hun Sen on Wednesday said those who curse or insult him would eventually die without a plot of land to bury their bodies after being killed by lightning, suffering the same fate as those who recently died in Thmar Baing district in Koh