|A farmer harvest sugarcanes in Khánh Hòa Province. Deputy Minister Trần Quốc Khánh said Việt Nam should expand sugarcane farms and improve refinery productivity in the long term to fill the supply-demand gap. VNA/VNS Photo Phan Sáu|
HÀ NỘI — The national council in charge of sugar quotas has auctioned licences to import 160,000 tonnes of raw and 40,000 tonnes of refined sugar.
Seven enterprises have registered as bidders for the sale of sugar quotas, of which five won the bid for 100,000 tonnes of raw sugar and two for 25,000 tonnes of refined sugar.
Specifically, the five winning bidders were Vietnam Sugar JSC, Thanh Thanh Cong Bien Hoa JSC, Bien Hoa Consumer JSC, Bien Hoa Ninh Hoa Sugar One Member LTD, and Quang Ngai Sugar JSC, with a quota of 20,000 tonnes for each.
Meanwhile, the two others were Sutory Pepsico Vietnam Beverage, granted a quota of 20,000 tonnes, and Coca-Cola Beverages Vietnam LTD, with 5,000 tonnes.
Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade Trần Quốc Khánh underlined the auction was to supplement domestic sugar output, which was falling far short of domestic demand, with imported sugar.
He said the importation of sugar was just the short-term fix to the supply-demand imbalance. In the long term, Việt Nam needed to expand sugarcane farms and enhance refinery productivity to pick up the slack.
It is also worth noting that it was not the first time that the council had put sugar quotas for auction.
The previous auction took place on September 23, offering the quota rights to 79,000 tonnes of raw sugar and 34,000 tonnes of refined sugar. Seven traders made their successful bids for a total quota of 109,000 tonnes.
However, the supply-demand gap was so large that the annual output of 750,000 tonnes, plus the import quotas in September, plus the sugar in reserve, plus the sugar imported previously from ASEAN, were insufficient to fill the gap.
The inadequate supply has left the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MOIT) with no choice but to call for bidders for the additional import quotas of 200,000 tonnes.
Trần Thanh Hải, deputy director of the Agency of Foreign Trade, MOIT, said the ministry had imposed anti-dumping and anti-subsidy duties on Thai sugar and anti-circumvention duties on some other types of sugar imported to Việt Nam via Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Myanmar.
That means winning bidders will have to pay the first two duties if they use their quotas to import sugar from Thailand and the other responsibilities for sugar from the countries mentioned above.
The national council in charge of sugar quotas was established under Decision No.2501 by MOIT. On June 27, the ministry issued Circular No.11 to regulate the distribution of sugar quotas by auction. — VNS