Charoen Pokphand Foods PLC. (CPF), flagship company of the agribusiness conglomerate Charoen Pokphand (CP), is stepping up its investments in Çambodia and Laos as a part of its program in preperation for regional economic integration by 2016.
President of CP Laos and CP Cambodia, Sakol Cheewakoset said that a combined amount of USD$8.5 million is being invested in the setting up of a new grain silo and drying plant for maize at Pailin in Eastern Cambodia, and in a new feed meal plant to be built in Champasak, Laos.
The intention of the investements is to fortify the group's integrated agro-industrial business, to be in a better position to serve the forthcoming 'single regional common market' planned by the Asean Economic Community (AEC).
CP started its investment in Cambodia in 1995, and has since invested over USD$100 million in feed, livestock farms and food production plants. Mr Sakol stated that the silo and drying plant in Pailin will help to ensure more efficent distribution to western Cambodia and to reduce logistics costs in an area important for it's agricultural production.
Mr Sakol added that CPF is contemplating in the investment of an aquatic business in Cambodia in the close future. He continued, "CP's business in Cambodia is doing well as the food business still has opportunity to grow. Our five-year business plan aims to double our total sales every year."
In Laos, CPF plans to invest a combined amount of USD$35 million on the feed, farm and food businesses in the country. Its food business in Laos is still in it's infancy, with it's "Five-Star" grilled chicken only recently being introduced.
CP Laos started operations in 2006, operating animal feed and livestock businesses.
The company operates one feed mill in the capital Vientiane which has a capacity of 120,000 tonnes per annum. The new feed meal plant planned for Champasak province, is set to have a production capacity of 60,000 tonnes per annum, and will serve consumption in southern Laos. The plant is anticipated to help reduce the cost of logistics by doing away with the need for transport all the way from Vientiane.
Mr Sakol said CPF is examining the possibility of introducing organic production both for livestock and plants in both Laos and Cambodia in order to cater to the growing demand for organic food.