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Rice exports surge despite pandemic

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – In the first 1-1/2 months of the year, Vietnam exported nearly 647,800 tons of rice worth nearly US$314 million, up 36.2% in volume and 19.6% in value year-on-year, according to the General Department of Vietnam Customs.

In January, the largest rice importer of Vietnam was the Philippines, with over 234,000 tons valued at US$110 million. This was followed by Ivory Coast with nearly 59,700 tons and China with 37,000 tons, Lao Dong newspaper reported.

According to the Vietnam Food Association (VFA), Vietnam’s rice exports this year were expected to reach 6-6.2 million tons, equivalent to the volume in 2020 and 2021, thanks to the increasing global rice demand. The Philippines, Ivory Coast and China will still be key importers.

Assessing the rice export potential in 2022, the Ministry of Industry and Trade also highly evaluated these three markets.

Recently, the Korea Agro-Fisheries & Food Trade Corporation announced a preferential tax rate of 5% for more than 55,100 tons of rice imported from Vietnam. South Korea has been applying a preferential tax rate to 408,700 tons of imported rice since 2020, and other rice volumes must be subject to a tax rate of 513%.

Vietnam’s rice exports will be promising this year thanks to the validity of the Vietnam-South Korea Free Trade Agreement.

Pham Thai Binh, general director of Trung An Hi-tech Farming JSC, said besides the Philippines, Ivory Coast and China, Malaysia, the United States, Africa and South Korea were the other potential markets as they had raised their rice imports from Vietnam.

In addition, rice exports to the European Union were forecast to surge this year thanks to the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, in which the bloc will exempt tariffs for 80,000 tons of rice from Vietnam per year.

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