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Vietnam’s tra fish exports to China take sharp plunge in November

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CAN THO – The turnover of Vietnamese tra fish exported to China this November fell as much as 29.3% month-on-month, with experts attributing the decline to a large amount of goods being stuck at the Chinese border gates to undergo Covid-19 tests that the Chinese authorities have imposed on imported frozen food.

According to a report released on December 28, by the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), the export of the fish to China and Hong Kong in October and November was gloomy.

VASEP’s market analysts said that a huge volume of commodities was stuck at the border gates due to the prolonged surveillance and food sample testing process, affecting Vietnam’s tra fish exports to this neighboring market.

Earlier, VASEP announced that China had stepped up efforts to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus through imported frozen seafood products from November 10. Specifically, the Chinese competent forces have adopted surveillance, disinfection and origin traceability measures for all consignments of frozen seafood products shipped to China’s major ports such as Shanghai, Wuhan and Qingdao.

Frozen seafood shipments from Vietnam, including tra fish fillets, have to be subject to food and packaging tests at the ports. However, the prolonged surveillance and testing process led to a huge volume of commodities getting stuck at the ports.

Given this situation, VASEP called on local exporters to stay calm and not reduce the export price of tra fish, as lowering export prices will not help the goods that are stuck at ports and will leave a negative impact on shipments bound for China.

Further, local exporters should work closely with importers to stay updated on the export process, aimed at preventing goods from getting stuck at ports and negotiating to adjust the export schedule more appropriately, said the representative.

VASEP had proposed that the ministries of Agriculture and Rural Development, Industry and Trade and Foreign Affairs work jointly with the Chinese authorities to eliminate the obstacles facing local seafood exporters, as Vietnam has brought the Covid-19 pandemic under control.

In the year to November, Vietnam exported tra fish worth some US$485 million to the China-Hong Kong market, up 7.6% against last year’s figure. Also, this turnover accounted for 35.7% of Vietnam’s total outbound sales of the fish in the 11-month period.

By Trung Chanh

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