Thursday, December 18, 2008

Birds Flu Outbreaks Threatened Businesses in Phnom Penh

BY BUTH REAKSMEY KONGKEA

The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has ordered to stop the sale and as well as transporting the chickens and ducks from about three kilometers radius for 30 says inspection period, especially Doeum Roeus commune, Kandal Stung district, Kandal province, said officials.

Kao Phal, Director of Animal Health and Food Production Department in the Ministry of Agriculture, Forests and Fisheries (MoAFF), said on December 17, his authorities have issued an official announcement to stop the sale of chickens. He said the announcement was made after the area investigation was done by the MoAFF and Health Ministry Officials following the exposure of one case of a 19-year-old man on November 28.

He told the Cambodia Weekly that the Ministry decided to kill about 400 chickens and would continue with more chickens and ducks in the area in order to contain the spread of the virus, which experts fear could mutate into a more dangerous form for human beings.Dr. Ly Sovann, Deputy Director of the Disease Outbreak Department of the Ministry of Health, said that there were areas that had been affected by the disease, but it had not mutated into something more dangerous for human being.

Dr. Sovann said that so far, over 200 villagers from Kandal Steung district, in Kandal province and Samrong Torng district, in Kampong Speu province have tested and consulted for avian influenza in provincial health centers and Calmette Hospital, in Phnom Penh.

He continued that as a result, all villagers who have passed a blood test, are negative for avian influenza. He emphasized that so far, there is only one man who has a H5N1 “bird flu” virus affection in Cambodia, in 2008.

He said that the victim was recovering and but still staying at Calmette hospital in Phnom Penh. He explained that the avian influenza, carried in wild and domestic birds by the H5N1 virus, has symptoms that include fever, cough, muscle ache and sore throat. It can be deadly to human beings.

According to the Ministry of Health’s report, since 2005 until today there are a total of 7 Cambodian people killed by Bird Flu in Cambodia.

Many poultry farms have confirmed that their businesses under threats after the Cambodian government’ officials recently announced about the H5N1 “bird flu” virus in occurred at a poultry farm located in Kandal Stung district, Kandal province. And caused a 19-year-old man had been lived with the virus last month.

The duck and chicken vendors said that they have been lost a lot of money from their sale since the “bird flu” outbreaks has been spreading out for publics in late November 2008.

Aun Ry, 56, a vendor of a Poultry farm in Kraing Angkrorng Village, Kraing Thnuong Commune, Dangkor district, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, said he has been lost a lot of money from the sale of chickens and ducks since the “bird flu” has been heard in Cambodia.

He said that nowadays there are about 12,000 chickens and 8,000 ducks in his farm. But now he is not able to sell out the poultry to his clients at every market in Phnom Penh. He said that before the outbreak of “Bird Flu”, he could be sold out at least 400$ per day, but now he is able to make money from $100 to $300 per day.

“If the virus is still spreading out, and I am afraid that my daily business would be shut down and I will also loose a lot of moneys,” he told the Cambodia Weekly.

Loeng Kimsreng, 49, A poultry farm’s vendor in Thnal Tor Toeng commune, Samrong Tong district, Kampong Speu province, said his business has also been faced collapsing following the infection of one man-bird flu occurred in Kandal province last month.

Kimsreng said that about 5,000 chickens in his poultry farm. He said that in order to create his own business, he spent a total of US $3,000 as he had borrowed this money from the ACLEDA Bank in Kampong Speu province.

He pointed out that last week, due to the presence of Bird Flu virus and some of his chickens were sick, he destroyed about 300 chickens in his farm.

“I think that if the Bird Flu is still spreading out in Kampong Speu province, I would loose every thing and I will become as a debtor of the ACELDA Bank,” he told the Cambodia Weekly.

Ly Sinath, 41, a chicken vendor in Orussey market in Phnom Penh, said her business has been declined in recent weeks after the Bird Flu confirmed outbreaks in Cambodia.

“My chicken selling is declined now after the outbreak of Bird Flu virus in Kandal province,” she said. “Before the outbreak of virus, I was able to sell at least from 50 to 80 chickens per day. But now, I am able to sell only from 30 to 50 a day.”

She added,” I think that if the Bird Flu virus is existing in Cambodia, I will stop selling the chickens. However, I will consider to find another business for sales in this market.”

Yun Savy, 45, another chicken vendor in Deumkor market in Phnom Penh, said that her chicken selling has also been declining, recently. “My selling of chickens is not so good now because the buyers are afraid of the Bird Flu,” she said.

Last month, she sold out and earned from 80,000 riel to 200,000 riel a day. But now, she is able to make money for around 50,000 riel to 100,000 riel per day.


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