Exports of rubber rose moderately during the first three months of the year, as the market for the commodity continues to be hampered by unstable prices.
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During the first quarter of 2018, rubber exports grew by just 880 tonnes, reaching a total of 25,416 tonnes. During that same period, the price of the commodity decreased.
“Due to the current situation, the price of rubber in the international market is not stable, and farmers and rubber producers are taking a hit,” said Pol Sopha, director-general of the general directorate of rubber.
Lim Heng, vice-president of An Mady Group, expressed similar concerns.
“With the cost of production being very high in Cambodia, a low price is bad news for farmers and producers, who won’t be able to make a profit,” he said.
In Thailand and Vietnam, the price of the commodity is not affecting the industry as badly because the costs of production is much lower, Mr Heng said, explaining that in these countries the government grants tax cuts to farmers and producers of the commodity.
In 2017, Cambodia exported more than 190,000 tonnes of rubber latex, an increase of 30 percent year-on-year. Vietnam, China, Singapore and Malaysia were the biggest buyers.
Cambodia is the sixteenth largest rubber latex producer in the world.