The Federation of Cambodian Rice Exporters (FCRE) was officially launched on Saturday in a bid to promote and maintain a strong presence of the country's rice in the international marketplace, officials said.
"The federation's ambition is to expand Cambodian rice exports and to work relentlessly on continuous improvement of Cambodian rice sector," Kim Savuth, FCRE's president, said at the launching ceremony.
He said the federation's members consist of rice exporters, banks, logistic companies and other allied businesses.
"We are together in order to create a dynamic force to boost rice exports," said Savuth, who is also president of Khmer Food Co. Ltd.
Seun Sotha, director of the Commerce Ministry's trade promotion department, said the FCRE is the only one organization that is authorized to discuss and negotiate with the government in all issues relevant to rice exports.
Addressing the event, Minister of Commerce Cham Prasidh said the federation will contribute to assisting the country to achieve the export target of one million tons of milled rice by 2015.
Cambodia is an agrarian country. More than 80 percent of the population is farmers. In August, 2010, the government has launched the rice export promotion strategy, aiming at exporting one million tons of milled rice by 2015.
However, the country could export only the small amount of its milled rice due to the shortages of sophisticated post-harvest technology and capital.
According to the figures of the Commerce Ministry, the country exported 141,470 tons of milled rice in the first ten months of this year, an increase of 4 percent from 136,000 tons at the same period last year.
With the exported volume, it earned revenues of 97.6 million U. S. dollars, up 25 percent from 78.2 million U.S. dollars.