|An employee at Thieu Nien Tien Phong Plastic Company works on a plastic production line. Viet Nam posted a 13 per cent year-on-year increase for plastic exports. — VNA/VNS Photo Huy Hung
HA NOI (VNS)— Viet Nam's plastics industry earned US$2.2 billion last year, posting a 13 per cent increase from the previous year. The export turnover from plastic products accounted for $1.8 billion.
Ho Duc Lam, chairman of the Viet Nam Plastic Association, told Customs newspaper that the export turnover of plastic materials was $407 million, representing a rise of 25 per cent and 57 per cent from the previous year in terms of quantity and turnover, respectively.
Plastic material production requires the use of high technology, which generates higher-value exports compared with common plastic product exports.
Lam said the industry last year exported 20 plastic products to foreign markets; six of these products generated a turnover of more than $100 million each.
In particular, the exports of plastic bags, films and garbage bags generated a turnover of over $150 million last year.
Plastic bag exports posted an increase of 27 per cent in 2013 over the previous year, while the growth in exports of plastic decorative products was 26.4 per cent.
Viet Nam's plastic products were shipped to 151 countries and territories, including high-demand markets, such as Japan, the United States, Germany and the European Union.
Japan is the country's largest importer of plastic products, importing goods worth $401 million and accounting for 20 per cent of Viet Nam's total plastic exports.
The association noted that Japan continues to hold immense potential demand for the industry's products.
Viet Nam exported 20 varieties of plastic products to Japan; 15 of these products generated a turnover of more than $1 million each.
Lam urged Vietnamese plastic producers to prepare long-term strategies and invest in market research to increase their penetration of the Japanese market.
The US is the second largest consumer of Viet Nam's plastic exports, accounting for $175 million, or 8.6 per cent, of the total export turnover last year.
In 2013, plastic producers continued operations, despite facing tough economic challenges. The association forecast a growth rate of 13.5-16.5 per cent for the industry this year because of the global economic downturn.
Lam added that domestic plastic producers are facing competition from other countries in the region.
Moreover, businesses need to focus on environmentally-friendly and safe products for sustainable growth in exports.
Last year, domestic plastic firms accounted for 45 per cent of the country's total export turnover. The balance was accounted for by foreign-investor-led enterprises. — VNS