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Cambodia eyes more pepper exports to Japan

Cambodia has promoted the potential of pepper among Japanese businesses and entrepreneurs, hoping its export to Japan will increase, benefitting the farmers.

The Ministry of Commerce and Asean-Japan Center, in collaboration with the Cambodia Pepper and Spices Federation and Japan Pepper Association, held an online workshop on the Promotion of Cambodia Pepper to the Japanese Market last Friday, aimed to promote the potential of pepper to Japanese people.

The workshop’s purpose was to show the unique condition of Cambodia’s pepper, the demand for pepper in the Japanese market, and strengthen the quality of the commodity for export to Japan.

The ministry said Cambodia’s pepper export to Japan remained low at 10 tonnes in 2021.

Kao Kosal, Director-General of Directorate of Trade Promotion, Ministry of Commerce, said that more pepper would be placed for export to Japan, and local farmers would increase the production quality of the commodity.

“The workshop will provide information to pepper producers in Cambodia about the export opportunity to Japan. It will promote pepper production to Japanese people, advance close cooperation and partnership between companies to add Cambodia’s pepper into the existing products in Japan,” Kosal said.

The ministry also called for Japanese investors to invest in pepper production facilities in the Kingdom.

“After the workshop, it will boost Cambodia’s pepper to be well-recognised and supported by Japanese people, and I call Japanese firms to consider investing and running businesses in Cambodia, particularly pepper planting and processing sector among other potential products,” Kosal said.

The Cambodia Pepper and Spices Federation’s Mak Ny said that boosting exports needs to promote the products to the targeted markets effectively.

The workshop, attended by more than 100 businesses and entrepreneurs in Japan, was a way to promote the commodity to customers, Ny said.

“Japan is one of the important markets for our pepper, and in the present time, we need more markets so that the workshop will promote the commodity more widely to the Japanese people,” Ny said.

According to the Cambodia Pepper and Spices Federation, Cambodia has a variety of pepper – geographical indicator pepper, organic pepper, good practice
agriculture pepper, and regular pepper.

“We are working closely with the Japan Pepper Association, Ministry of Commerce, and ASEAN-Japan Center to promote pepper. We hope that the demand for Cambodia’s pepper in the Japanese market will increase after they realise the good quality of our pepper,” Ny said.

Kunihiko HIRABAYASHI, Secretary-General, ASEAN-Japan Centre, said that the characteristic of Cambodian pepper is its fruity aroma and the climate and soil. Cambodia produces a wonderful aroma and the finest pepper in the world.

In recent years, the export volume has increased dramatically, and spices, including pepper, are the third-largest export item from Cambodia to Japan in the agricultural products field. The amount has risen to $156,000, he said.

“We hope that today’s workshop will lead to more partnerships between Japan and Cambodia and will be a catalyst for your new trade,” Kunihiko said.

Cambodia exported $1,752 million worth of goods to Japan last year, a year-on-year increase of 8.4 percent, according to data from the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), which cited that two-way trade volume reached $2,332 million.

The primary market for Cambodia’s pepper exports is made up of 13 countries – Japan, Belgium, Netherlands, France, Germany, Switzerland, Vietnam, the US, Russia, England, India, Belarus and South Korea.

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