Golden Rice, a local rice miller and exporter, will expand its production capacity with a new $14 million loan disbursed by Proparco, the private investment arm of Agence Française de Développement (AFD).
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According to a press release issued by Proparco, the loan will be used to increase Golden Rice’s production capacity and help finance its biomass energy production programme, which is being developed as part of an environmental and social strategy.
“It will allow the company to finance an additional megawatt of rice husk gasification for electricity production, encouraging innovative technology, supporting renewable energy and decreasing Golden Rice’s energy-related costs,” Proparco said.
Sok David, vice president of Golden Rice, said he was very thankful for Proparco’ financial assistance.
“Thanks to this financing and Proparco’s environmental and social guidelines, we will be able to increase our employees’ productivity and their knowledge of international standards through more training and implementation, as well as being able to buy more paddy from the Cambodian Rice farmers to produce more rice and expand exports.
“This will help us continue to strengthen the value chain for Cambodian rice with quality products and services,” he said, adding that part of the loan will also be used to take research and development projects to a new commercial phase as well as implement innovative ways to valorise paddy sub-products.
He added that loans from Proparco come with strict guidelines in terms of financial governance and environment and social standards.
Golden Rice specialises in processing, milling and selling high-quality fragrant rice products, including jasmine rice, which it imports mostly to Europe, China and Malaysia.
The company received worldwide recognition when it won the World’s Best Rice Award three years in a row, between 2012 and 2014.
This will be the third time Golden Rice has received a loan from Proparco. In 2009, it received $7 million, followed by $10 million in 2013.