CAMBODIA: Kingdom's rubber exports soar 53% on continued Asia demand

Despite depressed market prices caused by the European crisis, Cambodian rubber exports to the international market have seen a 53 per cent year-on-year increase in the first 11 months of the year, according to data from the Ministry of Commerce.

Exports reached 40,583 tonnes worth US$181.77 million through November, compared to 26,460 tonnes worth US$73.89 during the same period in 2010.

Kong Putheara, director of the Commerce Ministry's Department of Statistics and Information, said the increase of Cambodian rubber exports resulted from increased demand in markets outside of the euro zone - and simply because Cambodia had not yet exported rubber to Europe.

"The rubber we export is raw material for industrial products, not finished products. The markets to which we exported are China, Vietnam and Malaysia,” he said, adding that demand for rubber for car tyres, among other products, accounted for the rapid growth.

Mak Kim Hong, president of Cambodian Rubber Association, and owner of Kampong Cham's Chub rubber plantation, said that his company's exports from January to November of this year had reached 7,000 to 8,000 tonnes - surpassing last years' exports by around 1,000 tonnes.

He said the global growth in demand for rubber had caused an increase in this year's price, but  the recent European debt crisis had caused prices to decrease slightly.

Source: Daily "The Phom Penh Post", Phon Penh; 22 Dec 2011

(Syed Rashid Ali, Karachi, Pakistan)