June 27, 2012


Vietnam's shrimp exports experience robust competition from Thailand, India



Due to fiercer competition from India and Thailand as well as stricter regulations imposed by importing countries, Vietnamese shrimp exporters are facing major challenges, said the Vietnam Association of Seafood Producers and Exporters (VASEP).


While Vietnamese shrimp breeding is seriously affected by undefined diseases, Thailand and India were enjoying better shrimp harvests. Thai shrimp output is expected to rise 20% on year to 600,000-700,000 tonnes this year, while India forecast to harvest 100,000 tonnes of shrimp this year, up 30% on year.


India has recently succeeded in raising its market share in the US to 8% from 5% last year, becoming the major competitor to Vietnamese shrimp exporters in the American market, especially of large-sized shrimps.


Chairman Ho Quoc Luc of the VASEP's Shrimp Committee was further concerned about a possible reduction in shrimp exports to Japan this year as Japan has recently decided to increase its frequency of tests for Trifluralin and Enrofloxacin in shrimp imports from Vietnam.


Despite the difficulties, industry insiders said that there were still advantages for domestic shrimp exporters in the US market.


Tran Thien Hai, general director of the Minh Hai Seafood JSC, said that anti-dumping tariffs imposed by US authorities on Indian shrimps are higher than Vietnam's. The tariff for Vietnamese shrimps is 1% against 2.51% of Indian.


Thai exported shrimp prices are also less competitive than Vietnam's, as input costs of the Thai industry are likely to surge by roughly 10-20% in the wake of the country's decision to increase its minimum salary by 40% recently.


Shrimp is the key export staple of Vietnam's seafood industry and the country expected to earn roughly US$2.5 billion from the product's export this year. Vietnam ships its shrimp products to 70 international markets, of which Japan and the US are the biggest importers.