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Fishery industry looks to seize opportunities from FTAs

VGP – Viet Nam’s aquatic exports are expected to continue growing by 10 percent and possibly reach US$2.1 billion in the second quarter of 2021, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).

05/18/2021 06:13

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Fishery exports have shown signs of bouncing back with a relative growth rate in the first four months of the year and the revenue of US$2.39 billion, up over 6 percent over the same period in 2020.

The growth was reported in many products and a number of key export markets of Viet Nam’s fishery industry.

Deputy General Secretary of the VASEP Nguyen Hoai Nam said that some major markets such as the US, Japan and China continued to increase their import volumes.

Particularly, the US market will remain a bright spot for Vietnamese aquatic exports across many items such as shrimp, tra fish (pangasius) and seafood.

Regarding shrimp products, Viet Nam will have more opportunities in the US when India, the largest supplier for the US market, is encountering multiple difficulties in production due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

With the growth of aquatic exports in recent times, Chairman of Board of Directors of the Sao Ta Foods JSC Ho Quang Luc stated that thanks to their flexibility and acumen in searching for markets, Vietnamese entrepreneurs have made good use of advantages from free trade agreements (FTAs). Especially, the European Union-Viet Nam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) plays the biggest catalytic and stimulus role, thus helping to increase Viet Nam’s aquatic export revenue.

Exports of aquatic products in April 2021 were estimated at US$650 million, bringing the total in the first four months of this year to US$2.39 billion, an increase of 6.1 percent over the same period in 2020.

The US, Japan, China and the Republic of Korea continue to be the top four import markets of Vietnamese seafood in recent months, accounting for 57.2 percent of the total seafood export value.

Notably, in the first three months of 2021, aquatic export value increased in most markets. In which, the market with the strongest increase in value was Russia, up 55 percent; export to the US market also reached US$335.06 million, accounting for 19.3 percent of the country's total seafood export revenue, up 17 percent over the same period last year.

Meanwhile, exports to the Japanese market reached US$307.12 million, accounting for 17.7 percent of the total. In addition, seafood exports to the EU market in the first three months of 2021 reached US$237.82 million, up 2.4 percent over the same period last year.

In an effort to continue to remove technical barriers and expand the export markets for fishery products, the Department of Animal Health (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development) said that it has been working with the competent veterinary agencies of countries such as China, the Republic of Korea, Australia, the US, Brazil, Mexico, and Costa Rica. As for the Chinese market, the department will continue to support and guide localities and businesses in the fulfillment of requirements on veterinary hygiene and disease surveillance.

According to the Directorate of Fisheries, Viet Nam’s aquaculture area remains stable at 1.3 million hectares this year, but the production is expected to reach 4.75 million tons, up 4.2 percent compared to the 2020 figure.

By Vien Nhu