Cambodia - Market Update: Focus: Effect of the COVID-19 outbreak on food prices, March 2022



The COVID-19 pandemic has been rapidly evolving since the beginning of 2020 and has had a major impact on the global economy. Trade and travel have been severely restricted and many countries, including Cambodia, have instituted measures to contain the spread. From April to December 2021, Cambodia implemented a series of lockdowns in some of its provinces to contain the February 2021 community outbreak. Recently, there has been increasing concern over the new COVID-19 variant Omicron.

In addition, global supply chain bottlenecks combined with rising inflation and record debt have disrupted the economic recovery of many countries. The Russia-Ukraine war and ensuing sanctions imposed on Russia are expected to have implications on global food and energy markets as both countries are major exporters of grains (especially wheat and barley), fertilizers (such as potassium, nitrogen, phosphorus); Russia is a major global producer and exporter of crude oil and natural gas.

In order to understand if and how these shocks have impacted food availability and access to markets in Cambodia, the World Food Programme (WFP) monitors the retail and wholesale prices of key food commodities (see Annex 1 and 2) in 45 urban and rural markets across the country (see Methods section). An average of 340 traders and market chiefs are called every two weeks. In addition to prices, market chiefs are also interviewed to assess market functionality, including supply and demand issues. This update is based on market data collected in the first and third weeks of the month. Nominal prices are presented in this report. Additional information is provided by the Agricultural Marketing Office (AMO), Department of Planning and Statistics, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF).