Monday, March 23, 2009

Cambodia: Rice politics

Monday, March 23rd, 2009
By Chhunny Chhean
Global Voices Online

Rice is more than a staple of the Cambodian diet. It also implicates land rights, trade and international relations. Some Cambodians are frustrated over land leases to neighboring Vietnam. They are concerned the leases will evolve into ownership changes, resulting in a reduction of Cambodian territory.

Rice is more than a staple of the Cambodian diet. It also implicates land rights, trade and international relations.

A post on The Mirror reveals the frustration of Cambodians, including Cheam Yeap, a Cambodian People's Party official, over land leases to neighboring Vietnam. From the Mirror, citing Cheat Khmer, Vol.1, #40, 18.3.2009:
Thousands of hectares of citizen’s land lying along the Yuon [Vietnamese] border of An Giang Province, bordering Svay Rieng and Prey Veng, are being leased to Yuon companies by Khmer authorities along the Yuon border to grow agro-industry crops. The Phnom Penh Post published an article on 26 February 2009, quoting the Svay Rieng governor, Mr. Cheang Am, that 10,000 hectares of land in Svay Rieng are prepared to be leased to Yuon companies along the border and also, the Prey Veng governor, Mr. Ung Samy, told the Phnom Penh Post that he will discuss with Yuon officials in Yuon [Vietnam] about the leasing of rice fields along the border to Yuon companies to come to do rice cultivation in Khmer territory.
Yeap is concerned the leases will evolve into ownership changes, resulting in a reduction of Cambodian territory. Others, like Prum Soanara, an engineer, thinks the land is best utilized if given to the country's own citizens to cultivate rice.

KI Media highlights the problem of illegally imported rice with an article from the Nation:
The Thai Rice Exporters' Association and the Board of Trade of Thailand (BoT) will soon propose that the Commerce Ministry set up a Public Warehouse Organisation as an “import agency” to oversee rice imports once the Asean Free Trade Area (Afta) eliminates all import tariffs.
The agency would institute measures to protect Thai farmers, such as requiring imported rice only be used for raw purposes in manufacturing. However, exporters are worried such protections encourage those seeking to manipulate the system, thereby increasing the amount of illegally traded rice, including rice grown in Cambodia.

In addition to its practical roles, rice is symbolic of Cambodian culture, as this video shows. This piece from Khmer Civilization involves images of rice from farm to market:


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Development plan of Hun Sen's administration is like this.

Hun Sen is just the great of Khmer manipulator. Recently, he blasted that CPP will not tax the farmers like opposition party. In reality, opposition party requested government to tax only those who are owning large land, land concession and land leases.

This is clear, but Hun Sen is stupidly twisting others.

Now, leases have become more dangerous than that because the Khmer farmers is continuing to loss their farms and foreigner will finally own the farms especially VN.

Hun Sen has change his stupid mind!

Anonymous said...

Khmer farmers are a bit lazy to produce three times a year and they just leave the rice field without growing nothing. I had experience by advising them to grow rice twice a year at least but the farmers said they grow once a year is enough and a lot of rice in the warehouse. Growing rice twice a year to what? Do leasing rice fields to Youn is better.

Anonymous said... doubt that Cambodia PM and CPP is a well-known trading expertise in Country for Sale, Lease on land, farm land, mountain, sea, island, etc.

I heard our PM complaint that being a PM is not easy and very busy even lost sleep. So i think he is hardly being a PM for this country.

So, i am really curious if he and his CPP is willing to lease this country, Kingdom of Cambodia, to me for 99 years. Because he and his CPP is tired of this country already, that is why he lease and sale almost everything in this country.

Before, this country is completely sunk, i would like to lease this country for 99 years so that i can develop and lift my beloved country to compete with other Asia, Europe and other world nation....This country has its pride, so at any cost and blood, i must sacrify for her.....this country lost alot of land its belonged she cannot bear to lose more land and island like Phuoluvai or Phuo Cok island.

Please Mr. PM, if you are tired then lease this country to can rest assure that this country will be emerged to the world if it is in my hand and my administration......

Don't just talk nonsense about nontax on farm land....just look around, those farm land is owned by Vietnamese and your cronies, that is why you don't tax because it is all yours shit....Vietnam and Thailand bought rice produced in Cambodia and onsell to the world markets to become number 2 or 3 rice exporters in the world, while Cambodia is struggling for food....this is your bastard government, Mr. PM????
You are not ashame, even Thai foreign minister can say you are thug???

I am really ashame to be Cambodian and fully ashame to have stupid PM and its fucking government, but i am not ashame to defend my beloved Kingdom of Cambodia.

Mother fucker...go fuck your mum if you cannot defend your country from invasion by Thailand and Vietnam, bastard PM...and bastard all government Ministers and officers...

Anonymous said...

don't blame hun sen he dosen't know anything,he just receives the order from Youn,if he dosen't listen to youn he would loose his job as khmer thug.

Anonymous said...

I would worried more about food for Khmer than land for Khmer.

Anonymous said...

I like the Picture, she is really attractive.

Anonymous said...

She's love to beim pencil dick...

Anonymous said...

i think it is a bad idea to allow the vietcong company to lease our farmland anywhere so that they can grow more rice to be exported to their vietnam, the khmer people's historical enemies who still had possession of khmer's koh tral and so on! that is so wrong and should not be allowed to happen by any khmer politician. i think the MP mr. cheang am was right in thinking this way as khmer people cannot trust youn and what was the youn thinking? leasing khmer land along the common border to grow rice for vietcong? i think khmer farm workers can use that land to grow rice for cambodia and they don't need youn to come and lease or whatever from them! money is not the only thing that is important here! so, go back home, youn bitches! khmer people don't need you, you're no better off than our khmer people along the borders! i think khmer people ought to debate seriously about this in parliament to see what kind of benefit this will be for cambodia and our khmer people to lease khmer farmland along our borders to youn, our historical enemies who stole koh tral and even the former land of the mekong delta region! i think cambodia ought to think twice when dealing with youn leasing our farmland or whatever! god bless cambodia.

Anonymous said...

i think cambodia should think twice when it comes to this "rice politics." make sure the borderline is well defined first and rule of law are in place and regulation and policy are in place before leasing anything to foreigners, especially youn and siem. remember our history with these two neighboring countries. never trust them without good rule of law and well defined borderlines! god bless cambodia.

Anonymous said...

I'm one of peaple who live at youn border.there are some idea say that KHMERS are so lasy.That is not true.You should find out carefully.Do you know why?Let me show you some idea:
-Does Cambodia government secure market for farmers produce?
-Youn always make trouble to khmers who live in that erea.
-Cambodia autority do not thing with Youn and alot of else factors that make kmers peoples become hopless.

Anonymous said...

Vietcong rent lands for farming the rice? Oh hell no! this is not right, cambodia should call it off...can't trust vietminh black teeth! i say no no no no!

Anonymous said...

Regarding the advisor to the Khmer farmers. Would a lack of incentive be a reasonable explanation.