PHNOM PENH, May 2 (Xinhua) -- Cambodia produced 10.5 million tons of paddy rice in 2017, up 5.7 percent year-on-year, Prime Minister Samdech Techo Hun Sen said on Wednesday.
With the amount of production last year, besides local consumptions, the country would have some 5.56 million tons of un-husked rice, or 3.56 million tons of milled rice, left over for exports this year, he said during the closing ceremony of the annual conference of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.
Rice paddy is usually grown during the rainy season; however, farmers, whose fields are close to water or irrigation system, also plant rice paddy in the dry season.
Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Veng Sakhon said the country planted rice paddy on a total area of 3.21 million hectares last year and a hectare averagely yielded 3.29 tons.
"Agricultural sector grew by nearly 2 percent in 2017, accounting for 24.9 percent of the country's GDP (Gross Domestic Product)," he said.
According to the minister, the Southeast Asian nation exported 635,697 tons of milled rice to 63 countries and regions last year. China is the top buyer of Cambodian rice, followed by France and Poland.