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Tuna exports fall despite new markets

Update: February, 14/2014 - 08:32
Export turnover of fresh tuna fell last year despite the addition of 16 export markets that brought the total to 112.— File Photo

HCM CITY (VNS)— Export turnover of fresh tuna fell last year despite the addition of 16 export markets that brought the total to 112, according to the Viet Nam Association of Seafood Producers and Exporters (VASEP).

In the fourth quarter, export turnover reached nearly US$112 million, down by 16 per cent year-on-year.

For the entire year, turnover value dropped slightly by over 7 per cent to reach $526 million.

Last year, export value of tuna declined in all key markets, including Japan, the US and ASEAN-member countries, due to low demand.

Although it remains the biggest partner, the US market fell strongly, especially in the last few months of the year.

Total export turnover to the US last year stood at over $187 million, a significant drop of 23 per cent compared to 2012.

In Japan, the total export value was $42 million, a year-on-year fall of 22 per cent.

In the ASEAN market, there was stable growth only in the first few months of the year. Growth fell near the year-end with export value of $35.5 million, down by 3.6 per cent year-on-year.

Experts attributed the downturn in key markets to the high stockpile of tuna in these markets.

Moreover, some Vietnamese exporters could not meet the required food safety standards, which had become more stringent.

Bad weather and high transport costs were other factors that contributed to the drop in export value.

Because of these difficulties, the association said it had modest expectation for this year's tuna exports.

It predicted that turnover could reach $550 million, an increase of 4 per cent compared to last year. —VNS

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