At a shrimp processing plant in Hậu Giang. Việt Nam’s shrimp exports are expected to be strong in the rest months of the year. — VNA/VNS Photo Vũ Sinh
HCM CITY — Việt Nam’s shrimp exports are expected to be strong during the rest of this year because countries tend to import more in the latter months of the year, with the free trade agreements Việt Nam has signed boosting its exports.
According to the Việt Nam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers, shrimp exports were worth US$1.4 billion in the first half of the year, a year-on-year decline of 12 per cent.
This was mainly due to a fall in imports by Việt Nam’s key markets such as the US, EU and China, it said.
Exports to the EU, the largest buyer of Vietnamese shrimp, fell 25.9 per cent to $300.5 million.
The UK, Germany and the Netherlands are the three main markets in the bloc, and exports to them fell by 9.5 per cent, 12.5 per cent and 50.2 per cent.
Shrimp exports to China were down 4.9 per cent to $233.5 million since the neighbouring country tightened its border trade policy and there was fierce competition from India and Ecuador.
China has increased its imports from India and Ecuador, who offer more competitive prices than Việt Nam.
Its shrimp imports from India went up by 573 per cent in the first quarter and from Ecuador by 185 per cent in the first half.
Vietnamese shrimp exports to China showed signs of increasing in May and June. India’s shrimp harvest season has ended, and Việt Nam’s export to that country is expected to increase during the rest of the year, it said.
Exports to the US, the third largest importer of Vietnamese shrimp, dropped by 2 per cent to $250.4 million.
In the US market, Việt Nam has encountered strong competition from India, Ecuador and China.
After declining for the first four months of the year, Việt Nam’s shrimp exports to the US edged up again in May and June. The association said exports in May and June were still down from the same period last year, but the fall was less steep than in the first four months.
Exports are now expected to gradually recover since many markets usually have high demand in the latter part of the year.
The US has imposed a 25 per cent tax on seafood imported from China, including shrimp. This will be an opportunity for other countries, including Việt Nam, to boost exports to the market.
Việt Nam’s free trade agreements, including the EU-Việt Nam FTA, are expected to boost seafood exports in the coming months. — VNS