A corner of the lab of the Vietnam - Australia Seafood JSC. — Photo vietuc.com.vn
HÀ NỘI — Minister of Industry and Trade Trần Tuấn Anh has called on the Australian Government to allow the import of prawns and uncooked shrimps again soon.
In a note sent to the Australia’s agriculture and water resources department on February 9, Anh expressed concern about the negative impact of the suspension of imports on Vietnamese shrimp raisers and exporters.
On January 9, the Australian department had announced that it was suspending the import of prawns and uncooked shrimps from all Asian nations, including Việt Nam, after an outbreak of white spot disease was reported in five aquaculture sites on Logan River in southeast Queensland, as well as in the shrimps in the river, in December last year. The suspension is supposed to last for six months.
Under the suspension, the batches of prawns sent to Australia as of January 9 would be destroyed or re-exported, while the batches that arrived before that date or were in transit in Australia would undergo rigorous examination before it was allowed to be used.
Anh has proposed to the Australian Government to revert to the previous regulations that were in place before January 9 on the batches of prawns already imported to Australia, the batches which were en route from Việt Nam to Australia, and the batches that have been produced under contracts between Vietnamese and Australian firms.
In a meeting in Hà Nội on February 10, the deputy minister of industry and trade Trần Quốc Khánh briefed Australian ambassador to Việt Nam Craig Chittick on the huge losses caused by the suspension to Vietnamese shrimp farmers and exporters.
Khánh has also requested Australia to devise alternative measures and lift the suspension soon so that the growing trade relations between the two nations is not affected.
The MoIT will continue to work with concerned agencies from both countries to convince the Australian Government to end the suspension as soon as possible.
According to the Việt Nam Association of Seafood Export and Processing, Australia is not a big shrimp importer for the country, but it is a strong potential market because demand has been consistently on the rise.
Việt Nam is among the four largest seafood suppliers for Australia, occupying 11.2 per cent of the market share. Its shrimps export value to Australia annually crossed US$100 million. — VNS