Cambodia Begins Shipping Cattle Abroad

While Cambodia lacks some of the infrastructure and technologies of more developed countries, one resource the country has plenty of is cattle. And with an estimated cattle population of 3.5 million, Cambodia is in a strong position to export cattle to other countries, government officials said this week.

One company, Hassan Import & Export, has already started exporting cattle to Thailand and Malaysia.

The company was licensed last year to export up to 15,000 head of cattle. So far, about 500 head have been exported, Siv Nhan, first deputy director of Animal Health and Production for the Ministry of Agriculture, said Wed­nesday.

The cattle are raised by local far­mers then bought by Hassan to be exported.

Chan Tong Yves, secretary of state for the Ministry of Agri­culture, said the program will not leave the country short of cows for plowing fields. Rather, he said, it will provide farmers with another means of earning money.“The export could encourage farmers to raise more cattle,” he said.

Farmers can make upwards of $100 for each cow. Since the 1980s, Cambodia’s cattle population has grown by about 2 percent a year, Siv Nhan said.

Hassan will invest $1.5 million in the exporting program bet­ween 1999 and 2004, said Ismail Hassan, the company’s director. He said his cows fetch more than $300 each in the export markets.

A holding area has been built in Poipet to check the cattle for diseases before they are shipped abroad, Hassan said.

 

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