HÀ NỘI – Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc has asked the ministries of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) to review and find solutions to revive tra fish exports to the US.
The PM’s instructions followed reports that tra fish exports to the US had fallen in the first eight months of the year, and the situation would not improve in the remaining months despite a typical increase in demand for the holiday season.
The two ministries were told to act fast on recommendations made by the Việt Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP) on steps to boost tra fish exports. The ministries have to report on their progress to the Prime Minister before October 10, the Government Office said yesterday.
Earlier, the VASEP had reported because of the catfish inspection programme that started in August 2017, Việt Nam’s tra fish exports to the US reduced 58.5 per cent month-on-month to US$18.44 million and 54.8 per cent year-on-year. The Vĩnh Hoàn Joint Stock Company, one of Việt Nam’s largest tra fish exporters to the US, saw a reduction of about 50 per cent in exports of the fish in August.
Moreover, in early September, the DOC announced it would impose an anti-dumping duty of $2.39 per kilogramme on frozen tra fish fillets which were imported from Việt Nam between August 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016, following its POR 13. The rate was three times higher than the rate at POR12.
According to the local tra fish businesses, this was an unfair decision that has hurt them. The high antidumping duty and the catfish inspection programme will prevent local businesses from promoting tra fish exports to the US market in the future.
The VASEP said that by the end of this year, Việt Nam’s tra fish exports to the US market would continue to decrease.
Meanwhile, the domestic price of tra fish (pangasius) is rising because of limited supply and increasing demand for export at the year-end, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The prices of tra fish in the Mekong Delta last month was around VNĐ25,000-27,000 per kilogramme. The prices of young tra fish fry for breeding have also increased due to a shortage of the fish and increasing demand for breeding. To date, tra fish in being cultivated on around 5,140ha in the Mekong Delta, which is 1.3 per cent less than the previous year. But tra fish output in the first nine months of this year was 998,000 tonnes, up 9.8 per cent.
Localities with largest breeding area and tra fish output were Đồng Tháp Province and Cần Thơ City with 390,000 tonnes and 134,000 tonnes, respectively. - VNS