Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kingdom set to import 50K tonnes of salt amid lacklustre production

Kingdom set to import 50K tonnes of salt amid lacklustre production

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Salt fields just west of Kampot train station in Kampot town’s Kraing Ampil commune. Hin Pisei

Kingdom set to import 50K tonnes of salt amid lacklustre production

Cambodia is set to import about 50,000 tonnes of salt to supply domestic demand this year, as its production accounted for only 30 per cent, according to the Salt Producers Community of Kampot-Kep (SPCKK).

This will be the second consecutive year of salt shortages and the third year overall since the Kingdom first imported salt in 2009, from China.

The Kingdom’s total area under salt production is more than 4,500ha, exclusively in Kampot and Kep provinces. This year’s production has yielded a mere 30,000 tonnes, as the local market currently demands between 80,000 and 100,000 tonnes per year.

One hectare of salt fields can produce about 20 tonnes of salt annually, according to SPCKK. Salt production season falls between January and May each year.

SPCKK co-president Bun Baraing told The Post on Thursday that the volume of salt imports this year may be higher than last year.

“Importing salt from abroad is unavoidable this year because as of today, salt stocks have been mostly sold out,” said Baraing, adding that imported salt will be properly tested for quality at a laboratory.

The decline in salt output this year has been caused by two major factors – the weather and the subsequent reduction in the number of producers, he said.

He said more rain in salt production areas in Kampot and Kep provinces this year has caused problems for salt producers.

“If there is no rain during the three-month dry season, Cambodia will not have a salt shortage problem,” he said, citing labour shortages as the main reason for the year to year decline in salt producers.

“Salt production requires patient people and working under the sun. Many salt producers have turned to find another job instead. This is an ongoing challenge,” he said.

The price of salt has remained unchanged from last year at nearly $100 per tonne.

Between 2014 and 2016, Cambodia produced about 100,000 tonnes of salt per year. However, production has fallen for three consecutive years since 2017.

Last year, Cambodia planned to import 30,000 tonnes of salt from China but imported just over 10,000 tonnes. In 2009, it purchased 20,000 tonnes of salt from China at $2.2 million.

Cambodia’s salt industry generated about $22 million in revenue in 2017, according to Ministry of Industry and Handicraft data.

The ministry’s under-secretary of state Son Seng Huot and secretary of state Um Sopha, who oversee the salt industry, declined to comment on the issue.

MOST VIEWED

  • Construction begins on $1.5B Kampot seaport

    The International Multi-Purpose Logistics and Port Centre, principally invested by Kampot Logistics and Port Co Ltd and projected to cost $1.5 billion, has officially broken ground in Bokor town, Kampot province. The multi-purpose logistics and port centre, located in Prek Tnaot commune, will be built on

  • Cambodia eyes key role in electronics, auto hubs in SEA

    Two roadmaps, part of the LDC’s economic diversification plan, were designed to see it through its migration process, but experts say the journey might be arduous, particularly in the presence of two established hubs in the region By 2028, Cambodia hopes to have exited the

  • Hun Neng, lawmaker and PM’s brother, passes away aged 72

    Hun Neng, chairman of the 4th Commission of the National Assembly, has passed away from heart disease at the age of 72 on the afternoon of May 5, according to the Ministry of Information. Hun Neng is the older brother of Prime Minister Hun Sen, and was

  • Massive stingrays may live in Mekong’s deep pools

    US scientists have suggested that unexplored deep pools in the Mekong River in an area of Stung Treng could potentially be home to significant populations of giant freshwater stingrays, one of the world’s largest freshwater fish species. This comes as a fisherman hooked a 180

  • PM meets with US business giants

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has met with a number of major US companies who have expressed interest in investing in Cambodia, in a meeting convened by the US-ASEAN Business Council (US-ABC). A delegation of companies – including Amazon, Meta, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, ExxonMobil, Ford, Visa and Pernod

  • CCC team off on US business trip

    The Kingdom’s leading economists and private sector representatives have called on the US to renew its tax preferential status for Cambodian exports, as a Cambodia Chamber of Commerce (CCC) delegation departed for a weeklong business visit to the US, where they will meet with