A delegation from a Thai agricultural co-operative yesterday discussed means of improving agricultural products and market access with representatives of the Ministry of Commerce in Phnom Penh.
Kamit Likhitvidhayavuth of the Thai co-operative said his team aimed to strengthen market access for Cambodian goods.
“Both [Thailand and Cambodia] are agricultural and food-producing countries in ASEAN. We do not want to have a tough competition to each other,” said Kamit. “If we both can co-operate, we will develop faster.”
No agreement was signed yesterday, but both sides said they share a common goal of boosting economic activities along the countries’ borders.
Transferring Thai technical knowledge on seed production was also a topic of interest to both sides.
Kem Sithan, secretary of state at the Ministry of Commerce, said he welcomes any effort to boost co-operation between the two countries, and he believes such an initiative could potentially translate to higher incomes for rural farmers.
“Cambodian farmers in provinces along the border are able to use higher technology like tractors and other machinery to support their farms,” said Sithan.
“They are getting higher incomes than the nationwide GDP per capita in Cambodia thanks to good co-operation among the two countries.”
Yesterday the Bangkok Post reported that the Thai government has plans to set up a rice trade zone in provinces along the Thai-Cambodian border.
Hun Lak, general director of milled-rice trading company Mekong Oryza, told the Post he foresees that the open markets would translate to higher demand, which will eventually benefit farmers.
“In my opinion, more demand will make the price higher and gives farmers and incentive to increase their productivity for more profit,” he said.