Cambodia Corn: The First License to Ship to China


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Cambodia has two seasons for Corn crop. The wet season is the main Corn crop season. Sowing starts in July to August, with harvest from October to November. The dry season crop begins in February to March, and the crop is harvested from June to July. MY21/22 includes the 2021 wet season and 2022 dry season.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries (MAFF) estimated MY21/22 Corn production lower than the previous year at 792,000 tons (19 percent). Red/yellow Corn, which is used for feed manufacturing, generally accounts for 90 percent of total production. MAFF’s data shows an increase of 15 percent in cassava cultivated areas; sources also said Corn farmers continued to switch to cassava due to higher demand for cassava chips and starch, higher prices, and fewer husbandry efforts.

Therefore, the USDA revised its MY21/22 estimates for Corn harvest area and production to 156,000 ha and 781,000 tons. Industry speculates that prices of Corn continue growing, thereby incentivizing less switch from Corn farming to cassava in the coming year. The USDA forecasts MY22/23 harvest area and production at 143,000 ha and 716,000 tons, respectively.

The Cambodian Prime Minister requested relevant ministries to take measures to drive prices down but take precautions regarding ASF. It is expected that high pork prices will incentivize farmers to raise more pigs, thereby increasing feed demand. Hence, it is forecast that feed demand will grow to 900,000 tons in CY2021 and forecasts 1,000,000 tons in CY2022.

The feed industry, as well as exports, mainly drive demand for local Corn. Cross-border trade of Corn is vital as farmers’ and collectors’ working capital and storage capacity shortage encourage them to sell Corn quickly after harvest. Due to COVID-19, Cambodia, Vietnam, and Thailand imposed stricter preventive measures at the borders, affecting cross-border trade flows. The USDA predicts this trend to continue; therefore, it revised its estimated MY21/22 Corn exports, including cross-border trade, to 350,000 tons and decreased to 300,000 tons in the MY22/23 forecast.

China-Cambodia Corn Trade

China provided the greenlight for Cambodia to export Corn, with HN Outsources Trading and Technology Co. Ltd named the first company to be registered to ship the crop to China. This is the second Cambodian agricultural product to be permitted for export to China in 2022. The Chinese Administration of Customs issued a list of companies registered to export Cambodian Corn to China on August 27, indicating that Cambodia’s Corn crop has finished its export procedures and is permitted to ship.

Chea Sokhy, CEO of HN Outsources Trading and Technology Co. Ltd, said he wants to ship the crop because Cambodia does not have a registered company for exporting Corn. Generally, it only registered companies that export rice, as exporting Corn to China is a strict process that requires multiple stages. Based on his experience, he went through many stages to obtain registration, including working with the ministries of agriculture in Cambodia and China, the Ministry of Commerce, and other relevant ministries. He added: It took more than a year to obtain a license. Their evaluation and standards are very high. So, if we can export to China, we can also export to Europe, Australia, and the United States. Therefore, it will expand the Corn market.

About 84,900 tons of Corn were exported in the first seven months of this year, a 40 percent decrease from the previous year’s period. A total of 76,540 tons was shipped to Vietnam, 7,500 tons to Thailand, 846.60 tons to Taiwan, and 12.30 tons to Korea.

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