The Rural Development Bank (RDB) has announced a new $2-million programme that aims to boost agricultural production by training local farmers on advance techniques and equipment.
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Funded with a concessional loan from the Asean Development Bank, the project will be implemented across the country and seeks to reduce Cambodia’s reliance on agricultural imports, RDB general director Kao Thach said.
He said the programme has no launch date yet but that it will run for two to three years.
“In the initial phase, we are focusing on growing safe vegetables. We aim to improve the lives of small farmers and increase the supply of safe vegetables in the country.”
Mr Thach said the project will train farmers in a variety of farming techniques, irrigation, and the use of advanced equipment.
“We will ensure that the farmers adhere to high standards,” he said, adding that about 12 local companies have agreed to buy from farmers in the programme.
“Farmers don’t have to worry about not selling all their products. We will appoint an agent to mediate with suppliers,” he said.
The project will start in Kandal, Prey Veng, Kampong Speu, Battambang and Banteay Meanchey provinces, he noted.
Mr Thach said the project will help reduce imports of agricultural goods of dubious quality, a topic that, according to him, is a cause of concern for many in the country.
The government, through its ‘Boosting Food Projection 2017-2019’ programme, aims to produce 60,000 tonnes of safe and quality vegetables and 150,000 tonnes of fragrant rice per year.