Agriculture plays a very significant role in Cambodian Society since the ancient time. It acts as a main mechanism and draws up as a great potential for country development. Most importantly, agriculture is rationally considered as a strong pillar for Cambodian people in ensuring of food security in which almost all of Cambodian people consume rice as diet food (Ngo sothath and Chan sophal, 2010), being as a main source of income to the producers as 93 percent of the rural people live in poor condition (Ros bansok at al., 2011), being as a main driven tool to poverty reduction while 71 percent of the total population employ in agricultural production (Ngo sothath and Chan sophal, 2010), and strongly contributing to GDP in a great amount (Chao lay, 2009).
Referring to the aforementioned concerning; therefore, agriculture makes many possibilities for country development. However, to make it sustainably is good question to be discussed in this sheet since numbers of challenges for agriculture are in place, and need to be promptly dealt such as low productivity, poor access to land and land security, poor soil quality and low input, still dependence on natural and climate factors (with the country become more susceptible to disasters such as floods and droughts as a result of climate change), lack of modernization (farming techniques and mechanization) and poor access to markets and credit. In order to settle such problem as well as to sustain agricultural production; therefore, the challenges above should be made properly, effectively and efficiently (Ngo sothath and Chan sophal, 2010).
To better implementing of agricultural sustainability, the reversely mechanisms should be carried out including improve soil quality and enhance the access to irrigation (paddy cultivation is largely rain-fed). Moreover, attributable to access to high-quality inputs and full skills should be made through strengthening of Cambodian farmers, as already known that Cambodia’s agricultural land is classified as having poor quality soil which is usually sandy with small quantities of nutrient and need more money invested in input; however, more treatment and research and development should be carried out to improve soil fertility of this type of land, as well as to identify ways in which to use the land in a more diversified and intensive manner, the limited coverage of irrigation systems in Cambodia restricts Cambodia’s agricultural production to only one crop per year and makes production reliant on rainfall, leaving it susceptible to floods and droughts in particular. In this case; however, large-scale and small-scale irrigation infrastructures should be rehabilitated and/or constructed in order to improve the seasonal calendar of agricultural production, productivity, short-term production and engage in improving soil quality and insect destruction, seed selection, farming inputs and farming techniques have had a great impact on productivity suggested by Cambodia’s Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI). Referencing to the suggestion, correct seed selection should be made by local farmers assisted by agriculture advisors. Furthermore, the application of modern inputs and technology such as the use of improved seeds, fertilizers and tractors should be effectively adopted and adapted in Cambodia’s agricultural production. In addition, the application of chemical fertilizers and pesticides techniques should be extended by experts to the local households in order to improve the effectiveness of input because it has been a main problem while the outreach of agricultural extension services to publicize and introduce these farming techniques and technology to farmers is very low in the country land is a key factor for agricultural production; however, most of rural household own landless, land poor, and less than one hectare. Despite the case, many productive land are granted to investors since the production are less efficient then smallholder farmers. Moreover, almost 1.16 percent of rice production land is covered by landmine rendering cultivation impossible. Coverage these cases, reversely techniques should be reconsidered such as granting much land to farmers instead of investors and removing landmine for agriculture and lack of processors and millers encourages unofficial exports of paddy to Vietnam and Thailand, and prevents the country from capturing market opportunities for value-added through rice milling resulting from limited access to affordable credit and foreign markets, owing to their inability to produce consistent amounts of standardized varieties of milled rice and their lack of information about foreign market conditions. Thus, the national consideration should be implemented such as providing credit to afford local investors and encourage in standardize varieties of milled rice, and diffuse information of foreign market conditions (Ngo sothath and Chan sophal, 2010).
To obtain agricultural sustainability, by conclusion, six mechanism tools should be implemented such as improve soil quality and enhance the access to irrigation, more treatment and research and development should be carried out, large-scale and small-scale irrigation infrastructures should be rehabilitated and/or constructed, correct seed and application of modern inputs and technology should be modified, grant much land to farmers instead of investors and removing landmine, and provide credit to afford local investors and encourage in standardize varieties of milled rice and information diffusion of foreign market conditions.
Chao lay (2009) Agricultural mechanization and agricultural development strategies in Cambodia, submitted to Fifth session of the technical committee of UNAPCAEM 14-15 October 2009, Los Banos, the Philippines.
Ngo sothath and Chan sophal (2010) Agricultural sector financing and services for smallholders farmers. Ministry of Agricultural Forestry and Fisheries and Ministry of Water Resources and Meteorology. Phnom Penh, Cambodia.
Ros bansok at al., (2011) Agricultural Development and Climate Change: A case in Cambodia. No. 65. CDRI. Cambodia.