Viet Nam News
HCM CITY — Vietnamese companies, especially those in the Cửu Long (Mekong) Delta, should participate in trade promotion programmes if they want to expand exports to Japan, according to the Việt Nam Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade).
Speaking at a seminar on promoting exports of farm produce and aquatic and fisheries products to Japan in Cần Thơ city on Friday, Nguyễn Mạnh Hùng, head of Vietrade’s international relations department, said bilateral trade rose sharply last year and again this year to top US$20.93 billion in the first seven months.
Việt Nam’s main exports to Japan included garment and textile, vehicles and spare parts, machinery and equipment, fisheries products, wooden products, footwear, and fruits and vegetables.
Hùng said exports of agricultural and fisheries products faced difficulties.
Việt Nam exports only three fruits to Japan, banana, mango and dragon fruit, according to Hùng.
To qualify to enter the market, besides meeting quality standards, the fruits must undergo a hot steam treatment process to avoid insect infiltration.
Aquatic products must meet strict food safety requirements.
Đặng Văn Thái, director of Artex Gobelins Company in HCM City, who has more than 10 years’ experience in exporting to Japan, said "Any kind of farm produce that is unique and remains unmodified sells well in Japan".
“When I went here, I noticed that Japanese are very fond of jasmine rice, which is grown in both Việt Nam and Cambodia. In supermarkets in Japan, jasmine rice is sold at very high prices.”
Hùng said to increase exports to Japan, Vietnamese firms would need to better promote their brands as well as the advantages their products offer in that market.
They should be more dynamic in participating in trade fairs and trade promotion programmes in that country so that consumers there could lay their hands on their products.
Every year his agency sends business delegations to trade fairs and business matching events in Japan, and soon it would co-ordinate with the Cần Thơ Exhibition Fair and Trade - Investment Promotion Centre to identify enterprises for that purpose.
This way, more Vietnamese agricultural products would penetrate the Japanese market in the near future, he said.
Việt Nam has two free trade agreements with Japan, the ASEAN-Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the Việt Nam-Japan Economic Partnership Agreement, under which thousands of goods are exempt from tariffs. — VNS