Cambodia's Agri-Food Trade: Structure, Challenges, New Emerging Potentials, and Impacts of Covid-19
From the early 1990s, Cambodia’s agricultural food trade was seen as exports of raw materials and unprocessed primary commodities to neighboring countries such as Thailand and Vietnam. The production and processing capacity were remarkably low at the time. Realizing the tremendous amount of the exports and great loss of value-added incomes, the Royal Government of Cambodia (RGC) started to promote country’s processing capacity and quality refinement of the commodities for formal commercial activities. One of the biggest export destinations is European Union countries, when Cambodia enjoys Everything but Arms (EBA) Agreement privilege. Rice export to EU markets is well-known for Cambodia’s agricultural trade. 62 percent of rice exports went to EU markets, according to Cambodia Rice report by International Finance Corporation in 2015. In the first 6 months of 2020, the amount of rice export to EU was 135,576 tons, while China was the largest importer of Cambodian rice with the amount of 147,949 tons (Cambodia Rice Federation).
Therefore, an agri-food trade flows study was conducted by CDRI supported by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) to analyze Cambodia’s opportunities and challenges in agri-food trade amid the rapid shifts of trading partners. In addition, the impacts of Covid-19 pandemic on the agricultural trade is another dimension of the study.
- Discuss the findings against the wider issues, challenges, and opportunities of agri-food industry in Cambodia
- Formulate policy recommendations/options for promoting and strengthening the sector, especially for export readiness and competitiveness in the region and the world.