MH Bio-Energy Cambodia, which is the Cambodia’s first biofuel plant located in Kandal province, is set to reopen in October after closing earlier this year because of the high crops prices. The plant started operating in Cambodia in November 2008 by investing initially US$30 million.
The plant was closed temporarily in April 2010 due to high domestic cassava prices and a low final selling price on European markets. At the least 10,000 tones of domestic cassava is needed per month to produce ethanol, a compound that can be blended with petrol to reduce carbon emissions.
The plant will restart the process of its production in October which is the period of the annual seasonal harvest of cassava comes. And it is expected that the tapioca price will be going down at that time.
In addition, dry-chip cassava currently costs US$210 per tonne, about 45 percent more than US%145 per tonne last year. The price of the biofuel on the European market is still low, about US$500 per tonne.
“The price of ethanol goes hand-in-hand with the price of oil, so when oil prices go down, bio-ethanol goes down. There was no room for us to increase the price of ethanol in the EU market; that’s why we decided to stop production,” Kim Jung-ho, MH Bio-Energy Cambodia director of administration was quoted by the Post.