January 8, 2024


Vietnam lowers this year's target for seafood export value to US$ 9.5 billion




Vietnam's Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has lowered its target for seafood export value for 2024 to US$9.5 billion from its previous expectation of US$10 billion due to multiple challenges.


The fisheries sector is expected to produce an output of 9.22 million tonnes of seafood from an aquaculture area of 1.3 million hectares this year.


According to the Department of Fisheries, the seafood export value last year was estimated to reach US$9.2 billion, or 92% of the plan, down 8% compared to 2022.


Of this year's export value, about US$3.45 billion was from shrimp, US$1.9 billion from pangasius, US$900 million from tuna and US$800 million from mollusk.


Total seafood export output in 2023 was estimated at 9.05 million tonnes, an increase of 2% compared to 2022. Exploited seafood output reached 3.68 million tonnes, equal to 2022, while aquaculture output was more than 5.4 million tonnes, an increase of 3.5% compared to 2022.


The fishery sector's current challenges include the traceability of seafood to combat illegal exploitation and ensure food safety on fishing vessels and fishing ports.


In addition, seafood exports also face many other barriers such as animal welfare and carbon certificates to ensure environmental safety during the production process of products exported to Europe and the United States.


From 2024, the Department of Fisheries will continue to develop marine and lake-bed aquaculture and carry out scientific and technological solutions to increase the value of processed seafood products.


Meanwhile, the European Commission continues to maintain a yellow card warning for Vietnam's seafood.


Trần Đình Luân, director of the Department of Fisheries, said seafood export revenue decreased last year as the fisheries industry was hit by poor production standards and regulations for environmental monitoring as well as inadequate infrastructure in farming areas. The efficiency of catching activities remains low.


Consumption demand had also decreased in most markets, causing a drop in export turnover.


For 2024, Vietnam aims to produce 1.7 million tonnes of commercial tra fish and earn $2 billion from exporting the products in 2024, according to Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phùng Đức Tiến.


Despite challenges, many positive developments in the tra fish sector are expected this year.


Lê Hằng, communications director of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), said that, despite a decrease in market share in certain markets, Vietnam's export of tra fish is showing more positive signs in certain markets like China, Mexico, Canada, Brazil and the United Kingdom.


Vietnam's tra fish export value reached an estimated US$1.8 billion last year, down 27% compared to 2022, according to the General Department of Customs.


However, there remains significant demand for Vietnamese tra fish in many markets, especially for deeply-processed products, Hằng said.


The US has been among the top markets consuming the most Vietnamese tra fish products.


Demand for tra fish products has also seen a resurgence in the European Union.


As one of the traditional import markets for Vietnamese tra fish, China is expected to see a high growth in tra fish imports this year. In recent years, the country has consistently ranked among the top three biggest importers of tra fish products, following the US and Japan.


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