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Agriculture Expert Urges More Local Development

Development in Cambodia’s agricultural sector remains a concern, with very little in-country processing of goods, an expert warned Monday.

“If we consistently keep relying on the products of neighboring countries and we don’t process our own, then we can’t go forward,” said Yang Saing Koma, director of the Center for Study and Development in Agriculture, as a guest on “Hello VOA.”

While some governments seek the open market in other countries for their products, others do not, concentrating on local products, he said, answering concerns that Thai companies were not buying as many Cambodian products as in the past.

Cambodia needs to produce its own products, rather than importing manufactured goods, he said, especially now that the global economy was creating lower prices in Cambodian crops, such as beans, cassava, rice and rubber.

Prices in rice had decreased, he said, because there was no association to seek the proper markets and no investment in development.

“People just do it individually, not by networking, that’s why it’s hard for them,” he said, adding that he hoped the government would work on promoting domestic products.