Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - RDB projects rising rice loan demand for harvest

RDB projects rising rice loan demand for harvest

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
A rice farmer works in Kandal province during the 2016 harvest season. Heng Chivoan

RDB projects rising rice loan demand for harvest

State-owned Rural Development Bank (RDB) projected that the demand for loans in the rice sector will increase this season, said CEO Kao Thach on Monday.

He said while more rice facilities are ready for operation this year, there will be more demand for loans.

RDB disbursed $35 million to approximately 40 rice millers and exporters last year, out of the $50 million earmarked for loans.

The government’s decision to disburse loans directly through RDB sidestepped the Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF), the industry body that has lobbied the government since March 2016 to provide emergency funds for its members.

In September 2016, the government transferred its share of a $27 million package to RDB so the bank could disburse loans to millers, allowing them to purchase paddy from farmers.

In August, another $23 million was injected by the government, bringing the total to $50 million aimed at propping up the struggling industry.

Thach said a new loan will be issued for the rice industry at the end of July and he expects it to be in high demand.

“The demand for capital in the coming season would see a huge increase as rice facilities are ready for storage and milling,” he said, adding that the total storage capacity this season would be around 450,000 tonnes on the strength of four facilities launched earlier this month.

“Even if the loan package comes up short, we will request the government to add more money,” Thach said.

AMRU Rice Co Ltd CEO Song Saran said while rice cultivation has kept growing along with buyer demand, the industry needed to supply 350,000 tonnes to the international market in the coming season.

“Now that we are less concerned about storage and milling, we need at least $50 million in hand for the rice industry to supply the needs of the international market,” he said.

MOST VIEWED

  • Protests planned in New York as Hun Sen to attend the UN

    Prime Minister Hun Sen will speak at the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week. But US-based supporters of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) plan to throw eggs at his car as part of a series of protests to coincide

  • CPP: ‘Behave or Sokha suffers’

    The ruling Cambodian People’s Party (CPP) spokesman warned Kem Monovithya on Thursday that her attempt to damage “national reputation and prestige” would lead to her father, Kem Sokha, receiving even harsher punishment. Sok Eysan issued the warning as Monovithya, who is the court dissolved

  • News Analysis: Defiance can last for how long?

    The Cambodian government has so far stood strong in the face of mounting international pressure over its treatment of critics, but analysts, diplomats and ruling party officials now wonder how long the defiance can last. The European Union has led the firestorm of criticism, threatening

  • ‘Freedom fighters’ or ‘foreign puppets?’

    Former Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) official Meach Sovannara was joined by supporters at a rally in California on Saturday, where a US lawmaker hailed members of the outlawed opposition as “great freedom fighters”. However, a Cambodian government spokesman said such a phrase belonged to