Agriculture exports surge to $11b in first five months
HA NOI — Agricultural export value surged more than 10 per cent to US$10.9 billion in the first five months of this year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Among the total, agricultural products contributed the most with $6.1 billion, up 2 per cent over the same period last year. The figures for seafood and forestry products were $2.3 billion and $1.9 billion, up 9.8 per cent and 19.6 per cent, respectively.
Director of the ministry's Information and Statistics Centre Nguyen Viet Chien said that export of most of agricultural products bounced back after last month's decline.
The country shipped 860,000 tonnes of coffee, worth nearly $1.8 billion, in the first five months, a year-on-year increase of 7.8 per cent in volume and 3 per cent in value. The country's biggest coffee importers were Germany and the US. Coffee exports to Indonesia also enjoyed a sudden jump of nearly eight times as much when compared to the same period last year.
During the January-May period, the country also earned over $69 million from exporting 49,000 tonnes of tea, up 17.2 per cent in volume and 14.8 per cent in value. Apart from Russia and Germany, tea exports to other major markets significantly rose, with Pakistan remaining Viet Nam's largest consumer.
Though seeing a decline of 9.5 per cent in volume to 3 million tonnes, rice export value in the first five months still surged 14.2 per cent to $1.4 billion thanks to a price hike in the global market.
China has become the largest importer of Vietnamese rice while Malaysia overtook Indonesia to rank second with a year-on-year rise of 30 per cent.
Several African countries such as the Ivory Coast, Ghana and Senegal also consumed a large volume of Vietnamese rice during this time.
Vietnamese rice exporters are making all-out efforts to seek new markets for their products in order to meet the target of exporting 3.5 million tonnes of rice in the first half of the year.
In contrast to rice, the country earned $952 million from exporting 317,000 tonnes of rubber in the period, up 35.2 per cent in volume but down 7.2 per cent in value.
General secretary of the Viet Nam Rubber Association Tran Thi Thuy Hoa attributed the value decline of rubber exports to a drop of the product's price in the global market, which currently stands at only $3,000 per tonne on average, roughly $1,365 lower than the same period last year. Hoa said that the rubber export volume rose sharply in major markets including mainland China, Malaysia, Taiwan and India.
As for the export of forestry products, the shipment of woodwork products contributed $1.8 billion, up 20.5 per cent over the same period last year, thanks to a surge in major markets such as the US (up 31 per cent) and Japan (up 29 per cent).
Despite a rise of 9.8 per cent, seafood industry insiders admitted that they were facing difficulties in the European market, explaining that it was not only because of the bloc's public debt crisis but also its non-tariff barriers on imported products. Vietnamese seafood exports to the bloc sharply dropped in the first five months, of this Germany saw a reduction of 26.4 per cent, Holland 10.9 per cent and Italy 16.3 per cent. — VNS