Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Pig traders grappling with import licence restrictions

Pig traders grappling with import licence restrictions

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Pig vendors protest in O’Beichoan commune of Banteay Meanchey province’s O’Chrov district on Monday. Facebook

Pig traders grappling with import licence restrictions

Nearly 50 pig traders along the border in Banteay Meanchey province gathered at the O’Beichoan Commune Hall on March 30 to seek solutions from the authorities concerning the import of pigs from Thailand to Cambodia. They say a pig importing company has blocked them from doing business.

Te Kimlong, a representative for the pig traders in O’Chrov district’s O’Beichoan commune, told The Post on March 30 that they earned just enough to support their families.

“Each week, I would go buy pigs from Thai farmers at the border twice, importing one or two pigs at a time depending on whether their size. We transported them by motorbike and then slaughtered them to supply vendors in O’Beichoan market,” he said.

He said the local authorities understood their situation and allowed them to import pigs, but recently a senior military officer driving a car with RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces) licence plates had chased them along the border in Svay Chek district.

The officer claimed to be the representative of a company that had exclusive licence to import animals from Thailand.

“We’ve come to seek help from the local authorities to negotiate with the military officer representing the company to allow us to continue to do business. Our small business only earns a little income to feed our families,” Kimlong said.

O’Beichoan commune chief Tol Sarin said a total of 47 pig and pork vendors in the commune had petitioned him asking him to either intervene or help them bring the case to O’Chrov district or provincial authorities.

“There’s not a lot I can do in this situation either, but I will send their petition to the district administration and ask them to resolve it,” he said.

Sarin said the military officer had been identified as Svay Chek district military commander Yoeung Pok.

Reached on March 30 for comment, Pok said he represented the Lim Sivmey Company in the province. He said he only stopped pigs being illegally imported from Thailand and sent them to the officials in charge of border customs to be dealt with according to the law.

He said the officials at the border were worried that animals imported from Thailand that went unchecked could have diseases and cause an outbreak of local infections.

“The company is being cheated by brokers who import dozens of pigs from Thailand illegally and try to evade taxes and the animal health inspections. This leads to a loss of state tax revenue and affects the [profits] of legitimate companies,” he said.

Hun Sarath – deputy director of the Department of Animal Health and Production under the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries – said Pok was helping prevent the importation of cases of African swine flu from Thailand – where it is known to be circulating – into Cambodia.

“Illegally importing pigs from abroad not only causes a loss of state tax revenue but it also poses health risks, because those animals do not have health certificates issued by the officials of the exporting country,” he said.

Sarath urged traders to stop importing live pigs illegally without animal health inspections.

MOST VIEWED

  • Prince Norodom Ranariddh passes away at 77

    Prince Norodom Ranariddh, the second son of the late King Father Norodom Sihanouk and former First Prime Minister of Cambodia, has passed away in France at the age of 77. “Samdech Krom Preah Norodom Ranariddh has passed away this morning in France just after 9am Paris-time,”

  • Cambodia purchases 4 million Molnupiravir tablets

    Cambodia has arranged for the purchase of four million US-made Molnupiravir pills – enough to treat 100,000 Covid-19 patients – even though the current rate of daily infections in Cambodia remains low. The medicine will be distributed to state hospitals, pharmacies and private clinics, according to the Samdech

  • Rise in planned flights lifts travel hopes

    Six airlines have applied to resume flights in December, while two others have put in for additional flights and routes, according to State Secretariat of Civil Aviation (SSCA) head Mao Havannall on November 29. These account for 43 new weekly domestic and international flights in December, up 16

  • General’s gun smuggling ring busted

    The Military Police sent six military officers to court on November 22 to face prosecution for possession of 105 illegal rifles and arms smuggling, while investigators say they are still hunting down additional accomplices. Sao Sokha, deputy commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces and commander of

  • Is Cambodia’s travel sector in for another cheerless holiday season?

    The travel and tourism sector was heaving back to life as borders started to reopen, promising a festive vibe for the holidays and New Year. But Omicron and other Covid-related issues are threatening to close the year on a bleak note ‘Seems [like] Covid-19 won’

  • Cambodia, Thailand to discuss border reopening

    Cambodian authorities from provinces along the Cambodia-Thailand border will meet with Thai counterparts to discuss reopening border checkpoints to facilitate travel, transfer of products and cross-border trade between the two countries. Banteay Meanchey provincial deputy governor Ly Sary said on November 22 that the provincial administration