Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Region agrees on new standards for rubber

Region agrees on new standards for rubber

Region agrees on new standards for rubber

Rubber industry experts and government officials from ASEAN member countries gathered in Siem Reap yesterday to agree on harmonised standards for rubber products that would facilitate cross-border trade.

The Asean Consultative Committee for Standards and Quality (ACCSQ) Rubber-Based Product Working Group (RBPWG) agreed to 61 harmonised standards during the meeting, according to Chan Borin, general-director of the Institute of Standards.

He said about a third of these new standards applied to rubber products, while the remainder applied to testing methodology. The committee and working group also formulated guidelines for labs and an assessment body that will issue a certificate of standards compliance.

“If we want the free flow of goods we have to use the same standard that all other ASEAN countries accept,” he said.

Borin said adopting the same industry standards as other ASEAN member countries would encourage investors to establish rubber factories in Cambodia.

“Then our natural rubber would have its own market and we would be able to export finished products to ASEAN and international markets,” he said. “Our rubber price would not be dependent on other markets.”

Men Sopheak, director of Sopheak Nika Investment Group, which operates a large rubber plantation in Kampong Cham province, said harmonised standards play an important role in promoting rubber products in the domestic market, but were only one part of the equation for attracting investment in the struggling sector.

“It is not only standards that attract investors to invest here, there are other factors such as market opportunities and investment laws, and how ours compare to neighbouring countries,” he said.

Sopheak said his company’s existing factory only produced semi-processed rubber products, but he would ideally prefer to produce finished products.

“I used to seek investors to set up a factory here, but had no success,” he said.

International rubber prices have fallen sharply in recent years as a result of a glut in global supply. Cambodia’s natural rubber exports topped 124,000 tonnes in 2015, a 24 per cent increase over the previous year, but the value of the shipments fell by about 2.5 per cent to $150 million, according to Ministry of Agriculture data.

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh curfew starts today

    A two-week curfew from 8pm to 5am starts today in Phnom Penh, a day after a sub-decree detailing administrative measures to contain Covid-19 was issued by Prime Minister Hun Sen. “Travelling in Phnom Penh is temporally banned between 8pm and 5am,” said Phnom Penh governor

  • Covid in Kingdom hits ‘critical point’

    The Covid-19 situation in Cambodia has reached a critical point, the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned, as cases surge with two more deaths and 265 infections reported over the weekend. On March 28 alone, the Ministry of Health recorded 86 Covid-19 cases linked to the February 20

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Cambodia set for large-scale vaccination campaign as Covid spreads

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has instructed all provincial authorities to get ready for a large-scale vaccination campaign, with at least one million doses to be administered per month. “We will roll out at least one million doses. The vaccines we have purchased and received as

  • Time to Rise by rapper, chapei legend is viral hit with ancient-modern mix

    Kong Nay is known internationally as the master of the chapei dang veng, a traditional Cambodian instrument resembling a long-necked lute or guitar with two nylon strings that he was already playing professionally by the age of 15. Nay is sometimes referred to as the Cambodian