China is expected to stay the largest export market for Vietnamese pangasius this year, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).
China will not immediately loosen its zero COVID policy, so the trade between China with other countries will certainly not be able to recover as it was before the pandemic, it said.
However, the regulation on COVID testing for imported goods has been loosened since July. That meant exporters are not suspended from exports if there are traces of coronavirus on imported products or packages.
Therefore, Vietnamese seafood products have many opportunities to enter China. This neighbouring country will continue to be the major and potential market for Vietnamese pangasius products until the year-end and next year.
According to the General Department of Customs, Vietnam’s pangasius export value was estimated at 2.2 billion USD in the first 10 months of 2022, up 80% on year.
Of which, China market alone accounted for 30% with a turnover of about $654 million, up 110% on year.
VASEP said since 2020, China has maintained its position as the largest pangasius import market from Vietnam, surpassing the US market.
China has always maintained the highest growth, with sales increasing by more than two times over the same period last year.
The zero COVID policy in China is affecting this country's manufacturing industries, including the seafood industry. Fishing and aquaculture have been partially reduced.
Therefore, China has to increase imports of seafood from other countries to meet domestic demand and for the country's export processing sector.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the Russia-Ukraine conflict, causing increases in sea freight charges and inflation, are also big challenges for China's seafood importers and exporters.
Vietnam is a neighbouring country of China so its seafood products will be the preferred choice of these mainland importers, especially pangasius.
Vietnam’s pangasius export value to this market in October was estimated to reach about 64.2 million USD, up 105% on year, including 48 million USD from export frozen pangasius fillets and $16 million from whole fresh/frozen pangasius.
In the first ten months of 2022, the export value of frozen pangasius fillets to China reached 489 million USD, up 115%, while the turnover from exports of fresh/frozen pangasius reached 163 million USD.
The average price of frozen pangasius fillets exported to China in the first nine months of this year reached $2.28 per kilo. September had the highest price of 2.73 USD per kilo during this period.
Market demand increased in the third quarter and the beginning of the fourth quarter to meet orders and consumption during the Lunar New Year and year-end festivals, while the supply of raw materials decreased. That caused the export price of pangasius to increase in this period.
Since the beginning of the year, Vietnam has more than 400 enterprises exporting pangasius to China. The top 10 largest pangasius exporters to China included Vinh Hoan JSC, East Sea Ltd, Co, Van Duc Tien Giang Import-Export Food Processing Ltd, Co, Nam Viet JSC and I.D.I Multinational Development and Investment JSC.
Other leading enterprises include Dai Thanh Ltd, Co, Go Dang JSC, Truong Giang Seafood JSC, Cadovimex II Seafood Import-Export and Processing JSC.
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