Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Drought continues to hurt rice farmers

Drought continues to hurt rice farmers

Drought continues to hurt rice farmers

The year of the dragon is synonymous with rain, but the lack of water falling from the skies this rainy season suggests the mythical creature is not holding up its end of the bargain.

Farmers in provinces across the Kingdom are feeling the effects of drought after a month of dry weather in which an estimated 10,000 hectares of rice seedlings were destroyed and 135,000 hectares left at risk, according to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

A report from the ministry, dated August 15 and obtained by the Post yesterday, reveals that rice cultivation is six per cent less than it was this time last year.

It’s enough to have Ou Eth, 46, a farmer from Banteay Mean­chey’s Thma Pouk district, fearing for his future.

“I have little hope that my rice field can net me three tonnes of rice per hectare like last year, because of severe drought,” he said, adding that he has already lost two hectares of rice seedlings.

“I will find a job in Thailand for a while to get money to do dry-season rice cultivation.”

Pich Romnea, deputy director of the rice plantation department at the Agriculture Ministry, said he hoped tropical and Pacific storms would provide relief.

The ministry has rescued about 20,000 hectares of rice fields via an irrigation scheme and prepared transplants so farmers can grow rice at the end of the rainy season, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Khouth Sophak Chakrya at [email protected]

MOST VIEWED

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group

  • Ministry’s plan for net sparks fears

    The government has ordered all domestic and international internet traffic in the Kingdom to pass through a Data Management Centre (DMC) that has been newly created by the state-owned Telecom Cambodia, in a move some have claimed is an attempt to censor government critics. Spokesman