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VN buyup threatens Khmer kapok plants

VN buyup threatens Khmer kapok plants

V

IETNAMESE traders have vigorously bought-up the entire Khmer kapok harvest in

the last month which has put local kapok processing factories under threat

reports Reasmey Kampuchea newspaper.

Director of Takhmao Kapok Processing

Enterprises Samrith Samath said: "Vietnamese traders had been energetically

purchasing lots of Khmer kapok at a relatively high price of between $1,000-

$1,100 per ton of pure kapok.

Samath said the State Purchasing Scheme,

which supplies local processing factories with kapok, had set a price of $750

for a planned annual purchase of 250 to 300 tons.

Samath said the State

had been unable to buy any kapok because producers and middlemen had turned to

the Vietnamese traders to sell all their product reported Reasmey Kampuchea.

Kapok is a fluffy substance grown on trees with a similar texture to

cotton.

It is processed and then used as a filling in cushions, pillows

and mattresses.

Samath said: "The State has many factories and human

resources involved in kapok processing. The people will be very unhappy and

ashamed of the traders if they have to shut down the factories for a few

years."

He said the Vietnamese traders had maneuvered to provide 30 to 40

percent advance payments to producers to capture the entire kapok harvest.

Samath said the local people's need for pure kapok for mattresses and

cushions was estimated at between 100-150 tons annually.

He said he

would propose to the State that next year they purchase kapok at the free market

price but he was uncertain whether the plan would be accepted.

Samath

said the Vietnamese traders had bought the kapok at the high price because they

were planning to resell it to China, though he was unaware of what the Chinese

were planning to do with the kapok Reasmey Kampuchea reported.

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