Longmate Agriculture, a joint venture of Chinese and local investors, is preparing a direct shipment of bananas to China. It will be the first time Cambodia exports the fruit to China. At this time, Longmate is shipping the banana’s to China through Vietnam, in preparation for its first direct shipment to the East Asian giant.
Since Jan 8, the company has been sending a container a day to a port in Vietnam, from where they will be shipped to China, says Hun Lak, director of Longmate Agriculture. “We are just testing the export procedure now. We have not exported directly to China yet,” he said, adding that before they send containers directly to China their bananas need to be checked by a delegation of Chinese experts, who will issue an export certificate.”
“The Chinese experts will come to test the quality of our bananas in mid-February after Chinese New Year. Once they give us a certificate, we will be able to export directly and reduce costs. Why are we exporting to Vietnam now? Because Vietnam and China also reached an agreement on the shipment of bananas, so we want to export a small amount of bananas to test the market.
“We also want to build our image in Vietnam,” said Mr Lak.
Bananas will become the fourth agricultural product that Cambodia exports to the Chinese market, together with maize, cassava, and milled rice. The company will export about 25,000 tons of bananas this year and plans to double the figure in 2020.