Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Rice federation seeking loan

Rice federation seeking loan

Workers load bags of milled rice on a truck at a warehouse owned by Khmer Food Company in Phnom Penh
Workers load bags of milled rice on a truck at a warehouse owned by Khmer Food Company in Phnom Penh. Heng Chivoan

Rice federation seeking loan

The Cambodian Rice Federation (CRF) is seeking financing from China’s Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im) to build much-needed infrastructure such as warehouses and drying facilities to hopefully increase milled rice export capacities.

Sok Puthyvuth, president of the CRF told the Post yesterday that the CRF had set up a working group charged with studying Cambodia’s rice industry and preparing a proposal for the Chinese bank’s funds.

“We are working on our internal plan before submitting to them [Ex-Im] because we need to know exactly what our current capacity is and how large a loan we need to increase that,” Puthyvuth said, declining to detail how much funding the CRF plans on asking for.

In May, during the CRF’s presidential appointment, Puthyvuth said Cambodia’s rice industry needed more than $500 million in financial assistance for industrial development.

“We are studying all aspects of rice sector’s holding capacity infrastructure including warehouses, drying, silo, seeds, everything.”

Puthyvuth said the CRF will submit the rice body’s plan to the Cambodian government for approval. If given the green light, he said a loan agreement with Ex-Im could be signed as early as next month.

Managing director of milled rice exporter Mekong Oryza Trading, Hun Lak said the industry was in urgent need of “hundreds of millions of dollars” to build the warehouses and silos needed to house Cambodia’s rice.

“It is very important for the industry. When we have all of these, we can be able to accept big order contracts,” Lak said.

“I think now the Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Economy and Finance are still negotiating with the Chinese bank. It is a very positive sign that the government is acting to help rice exporters.”

Ken Rattha, spokesman for the Ministry of Commerce could not be reached for comment.

In Channy, CEO of Acleda Bank, which last year provided about 50 per cent of the agriculture industry’s $700 million worth of commercial banking loans, said the CRF will have to provide clear and transparent financial statements to prove the need for such a loan.

“Our country’s banking system has a lot of money to loan them but what is important is that most of them don’t have clear financial statements – that is the main issue,” said Channy.

“Any and all banks will ask about it. Of course they will likely grant them a loan, but it could again just be in small amounts.”

MOST VIEWED

  • US imposes sanctions on Oknha Pheap and Kun Kim

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation expressed strong dismay on Monday over the designation of Cambodian tycoon Oknha Try Pheap and General Kun Kim under the US’ Global Magnitsky Act. “It is very disturbing when the public figures of a country become the

  • Mother, daughter killed in hotel fire

    The bodies of a mother and daughter were found locked in an embrace after they were killed in a hotel fire in Phnom Penh at around 3:30am on Wednesday at the Phkar Chhouk Tep 2 Hotel and Restaurant in Phsar Doeum Kor commune, in the capital’

  • EBA withdrawal a destruction of EU achievements, PM says

    Prime Minister Hun Sen said the EU’s possible suspension of its Everything But Arms (EBA) agreement amounted to a destruction of its achievements in the Kingdom and the demise of the opposition group. Hun Sen made the remarks while addressing more than 6,700 students during

  • Rights Day forum denied in Sihanoukville

    The Preah Sihanouk provincial administration last Saturday denied the request of land communities for a public location in the province to celebrate International Human Rights Day 2019 as the administration had already held forums to discuss land issues. However, the land community representatives said they would

  • Kingdom calls on Japan to increase number of direct flights to Siem Reap, Phnom Penh

    Cambodia is requesting Japan to increase the number of direct flights from Japanese cities and provinces to Phnom Penh and Siem Reap, so as to contribute to increasing cooperation and tourist numbers between the two countries. During the opening ceremony of 3rd Japan Travel Fair

  • Court orders Sokha to stand trial on January 15 for treason

    The Phnom Penh Municipal Court has set January 15 as the trial date for Kem Sokha, the former president of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP) who is under court-supervised bail on a treason charge. In a press release issued on Monday, the municipal