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New agreement: Deal signed with China on rice, cassava

New agreement: Deal signed with China on rice, cassava

CAMBODIA has signed an agreement to boost exports of rice and eventually cassava to China, but officials say the Kingdom has yet to set benchmarks for the size of exports.

Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Chan Sarun said rice shipments to the People’s Republic could be followed by exports of other agricultural products – if initial shipments proved a success.

“We are confident that Cambodia will accomplish its ambition of becoming a regional agricultural exporter,” he said at a ceremony at Phnom Penh’s InterContinental Hotel on Friday.

The agreement established three protocols, including an agreement on sanitation and inspection standards for agricultural products, an agreement in principle to export rice to China and a draft action plan on sanitation standards for cassava.

Exporters will be required to meet Chinese standards for agricultural products by not including potentially harmful components such as insects, dirt or plant diseases.

Chinese Minister of General Administration, Inspection and Quarantine Zhi Shuping said the size of shipments depended on Cambodia’s ability to produce quality rice meeting hygiene standards.