Agriculture exports plunge, rice rises
|Workers select shrimp for export at a factory in the southern province of Ca Mau that belongs to the Minh Phu Fisheries Group. The country's shrimp exports generated turnover of more than US$3 billion last year, surpassing the annual target. — VNA/VNS Photo Tran Viet
HA NOI (VNS) — Export of agro-forestry-fisheries products in the first month of this year reached a modest US$2.32 billion, 9.7 per cent lower than one year ago, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
While exports of agricultural products decreased by 18 per cent year on year to $1.17 billion, seafood saw a strong turnover rise of 14 per cent to $552 million and forestry produce reached $534 million, up 3.3 per cent.
Farm products which experienced the steepest reduction in both export quality and quantity included coffee, rubber, tea, pepper and cassava.
On the other hand, the export of rice hit 517,000 tonnes, earning $243 million, up 16.4 per cent in volume and 19.5 per cent in value.
China took the lead in importing rice from Viet Nam, accounting for 31.1 per cent of the country's total rice exports, while many traditional markets, including Malaysia and the Philippines, decreased in both volume and value.
During the month, exports of seafood products maintained its rising momentum with $552 million, surging 14 per cent against the same period last year.
Given the overall decline, the Agriculture and Rural Development Ministry has guided involved sectors in boosting exports with the focus on heightening quality and added value, along with ensuring supplies for the domestic market.
Shrimp exports top 2013
The Viet Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) has said shrimp exports generated a turnover of more than US$3 billion at the end of last year.
That figure far exceeds the annual turnover target for shrimp exports in 2013. The jump in revenue was attributed to the rising global prices of shrimp.
The statistics from Viet Nam Customs showed that last year, Vietnamese shrimp exports were consumed in 88 markets worldwide and generated revenues of $3.1 billion, 39 per cent higher from 2012. The increased exports of shrimp not only compensated for the decline in the exports of other fishery products but also helped to improve the country's total fisheries exports.
Viet Nam's total fisheries exports exceeded the target of $6.5 billion, which represents a year-on-year increase of 9.7 per cent. Shrimp exports accounted for 46 per cent of the total fisheries exports.
The exports of white-leg shrimp generated a turnover of nearly $1.58 billion, which represents a year-on-year increase of 113 per cent. Meanwhile, prawns earned export revenue of $1.33 billion, up nearly 6.3 per cent against 2012. An increase in the global prices and high demand from shrimp importers helped to raise the productivity of white-leg shrimp farming, from 33.1 per cent in 2012 to 50.7 per cent in 2013.
Last year, Vietnamese shrimp exports went to mostly 10 key countries, including Japan, the United States (US), the European Union (EU), China and Taiwan. The US showed the highest increase in demand, an 82.5 per cent jump, to $831 million. Japan was placed second, with an import value of $708 million, while shrimp exports to the EU also saw an impressive recovery to more than $409 million. — VNS