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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Seafood exports grow 6% in Jan-Apr

The Saigon Times

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HCMC – Vietnam’s January-April seafood exports expanded by 6% year-on-year to US$2.7 billion, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).

In April alone, seafood shipments grew by 4% over the same month last year to US$770 million.

Shrimp remained a strong performer with April exports reaching US$285 million, the highest monthly revenue this year, and the total in the first four months reaching US$971 million, up by 6% year-on-year.

Le Hang, VASEP’s communications director, said that tra fish exports amounted to US$579 million in the four months, a 2% increase.

Tuna exports in January-April surged by 22% against the year-ago period to US$301 million. Companies attributed the spike in seafood exports to the falling stock in importing markets, instead of a market improvement.

VASEP statistics indicated that shipments to Vietnam’s top five seafood markets showed mixed results. Exports to the EU and the U.S. remained stable or slightly decreased, while exports to China dropped by over 22% due to inflation and high inventory.

A significant challenge facing the industry is the shortage of raw materials, as domestic seafood catch volumes are insufficient for processing needs, leading many companies to import additional raw materials.

New EU regulations and Vietnamese decrees on illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing have also posed challenges, particularly Decree 37/2024/NĐ-CP which the Government issued in April this year.

This decree mandates advance notification and documentation for foreign vessels 72 hours prior to their port entry and 48 hours for container ships and prohibits mixing imported with domestically sourced seafood in export shipments, creating confusion and operational difficulties for seafood processors.

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