November 21, 2012


Vietnam seeks Japan's assistance in agriculture and aquaculture sectors


Vietnam has urged Japan to help develop its local agriculture and aquaculture sectors by providing technical assistance, support and increased investment coooperation to industralise and modernise the two sectors.


The statement was made by Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Vu Van Tam at a meeting with Japanese Senior Deputy Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Takahiro Sasaki during Tam's visit to Japan from November 12-17.


During his working sessions with the Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO), Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japan Fisheries Association, Tam introduced Vietnam's 2020 fishery strategy and called for Japanese investment in the sector.


He also worked with leaders of the Ministry of Health, Labour and Social Welfare on farm produce quality management, especially on ways to improve the quality of Vietnamese seafood exported to the Japanese market.


The Vietnamese official asked the Japanese side to consider raising the acceptable level of Ethoxyquin content, an antioxidant in Vietnamese shrimp. Currently Japan applies a permitted limit of 0.01 ppm, much lower from the international level of one ppm.


The Japan Food Safety Committee began proceedings to consider the request on November 6.


Japan, one of Vietnam's main seafood importers, is the biggest market for Vietnamese shrimp. In the first 10 months of this year, Japan spent US$907.8 million on importing seafood from Vietnam, including US$508.16 million for shrimp products, up 15.2% and 6.5% on-year, respectively.