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Banana farmers told to register to access expert help

Chea Vannak / Khmer Times Share:
A local vendor sells bananas in a market in Phnom Penh. KT/Chor Sokunthea

Following the signing of a landmark agreement with China earlier this month, the Ministry of Agriculture is calling on farmers and companies that produce and export bananas to register with the government to gain access to expert advice.

Last week, Cambodia and China inked an agreement that allows the shipment of Cambodian bananas to the biggest market in the world.

In a press release issued yesterday, the ministry said owners of farms and export companies that register with the ministry will benefit from expert guidance to help them in the process of shipping bananas to China.

According to the press release, “experts from China and Cambodia will check and evaluate the condition of the products and the packaging to ensure they adhere to the required phytosanitary standards stipulated in the agreement.”

The ministry also made a clarification after some media outlets allegedly reported inaccurately on the subject. The ministry explained it is not requiring all fruit farmers to register with the government. It said it is just urging banana farmers and banana exporters to register to benefit from experts’ advice on shipping to China.

Speaking to reporters after the signing of the agreement on August 2, Hean Vanhan, deputy director general of the General Directorate of Agriculture, said the first shipment of Cambodian bananas to China is expected next year.

There are now three banana farms in the country, covering more than 5,000 hectares in Ratanakkiri, Kratie and Kampot, according to Mr Vanhan.

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