Five Cambodian companies have been given permission to export bananas directly to China, the Ministry of Agriculture announced earlier this week.
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The announcement follows the signing of a protocol on the exportation of bananas in August between China and Cambodia, an agreement that effectively allows Cambodia to ship the fruit to China.
According to the ministry, five local companies are now allowed to export directly to China after a group of Chinese experts visited their farms in Cambodia and gave them the nod.
Previously, the companies had to send their shipments through ports in Vietnam, a step that they can now bypass.
The companies green-lighted are Longmate Agriculture, Long Sreng Hua Jian Agriculture Development, Green Island Agriculture Development, Sovann Reachsey, and Grand Land Agriculture Development.
Shipments must meet certain requirements, the ministry said. Packaging must adhere to specific requirements and a phytosanitary certificate must be obtained, it said.
Hun Lak, Longmate Agriculture director, told Khmer Times that the company plans to export about 100 tonnes next week.
“Our first direct shipment to China will consist of 100 tonnes of bananas. The next shipments will be smaller, around three containers each, which equals about 60 tonnes,” he said.
Longmate Agriculture grows bananas on 400 hectares of land located in Kampot province. The company is able to produce all year round.