Climate Resilient Rice Commercialization Sector Development Project

Rice production and distribution are of great importance to Cambodia’s economy and culture

Climate Resilient Rice Commercialization Sector Development Project, CAMBODIA

Rice has traditionally been the mainstay of the economy and a major export commodity, however as a result of decades of civil strife, infrastructure upkeep and knowledge has fallen behind while Cambodia’s neighbours have substantially modernized systems of production and crop handling.

The Asian Development Bank, as part of its country assistance strategy, agreed to assist the Government of Cambodia with achieving the goal of becoming a net rice exporter, exporting 1 million tons annually. The objective has multiple challenges including irrigation and processing infrastructure needs, availability of quality seed stock, quality control, branding and marketing. Fraser Thomas were selected to prepare a wide ranging sector development programme including investments in infrastructure, capacity building, research and sector governance.

The services comprised conceptulaization of the Sector Development Program, development of policy and institutional advice needed for the necessary changes to take place over time, in depth analysis of scope for upscaling production and improving quality, selection of infrastructure investments, feasibility study, project design and program design.

Prior to the years of civil strife from the late 1960’s onwards, Cambodia’s rice production was renowned for quality and flavour in the region, a status it has spectacularly lost as industrialization in neighbouring Thailand and Vietnam has soared. Through the efforts of international crop scientists, germ plasm of the most valued rice varieties was preserved. The sector development program is of fundamental cultural importance, and is taking place at a time of rapid modernization and population growth. Rice production is also susceptible to climate change.

The sector development program is now being implemented. Some of the policy reforms have been put in place. Exports of high quality rice, including the country’s traditionally favoured varieties, are starting to increase.

The Government of Cambodia and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) signed loan agreements worth $70 million to expand the country’s rice sector and promote reforms in the finance sector.

Services Provided:

  • Sector analysis and conceptualization
  • Policy analysis
  • Development of investments
  • Preparation of guideline documents for further investments
  • Full project preparation including financial and safeguard analyses
  • Detailed institutional and capacity development plans

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