Vietnam shrimp exports in the first six months of 2019 reached US$1.4 billion, down 12% compared to the same period of 2018. Raw material shrimp price decreased, export prices has not increased, import demand went down from the main markets and fierce competition from India, Ecuador were the main factors that makes Vietnam shrimp exports could not increase.
In the first half of 2019, in the structure of shrimp products exports, whiteleg shrimp accounted for 66.8%, black tiger shrimp accounted for 22.6% and the rest were marine shrimp. Export of white leg shrimp reached nearly US$963 million, down 12% compared to the same period last year; Export of black tiger shrimp hit nearly US$325 million, down 16%; Export of other marine shrimp touched nearly US$153 million, up 2%. Export of processed black tiger shrimp dropped the most by 36%.
In June 2019, Vietnamese shrimp exports reached US$293.5 million, down 4.8% year on year. In the top 5 main shrimp importers from Vietnam, exports to Japan, the US and China have shown signs of growth, yet exports to the EU and South Korea still reported a two-digit drop. For the other markets, exports to Australia and Taiwan increased while exports to Canada, ASEAN and Switzerland fell.
Accumulated in the first 6 months of this year, exports to the top 5 main importers all fell while export to Japan, the US and China decreased less thanks to good growth in June.
The Vietnam-EU Trade Agreement (EVFTA) was signed in Hanoi on June 30, 2019. According to commitments in EVFTA, Vietnamese seafood exported to the EU shall be completely eliminated tariff (except canned tuna and fish ball applying a tariff quota of 11,500 tons) with the longest schedule of 7 years. Particularly, shrimp products will be more optimistic as the import tax on this market will drop sharply from the first year, then gradually reduce to 0% in the following years.
With preferential tariffs and business environment, Vietnamese enterprises will have an advantage over many other countries exporting shrimp such as India and Thailand in the second half of the year.
Shrimp exports to the US (Vietnam’s third largest shrimp importer) in June 2019 reached nearly US $ 64 million, up 17.7% over the same period last year. Accumulated in the first 6 months of this year, shrimp exports to this market reached US$250,4 million, down 2% year on year. After a continuous decline in the first 4 months of this year, Vietnamese shrimp exports to the US inched up in May and June.
Vietnam shrimp exports to the US in recent years face strong competition of rival suppliers (India, Ecuador, China …), along with the high anti-dumping tax of this market.
The US government imposed a 25% tax on seafood products from China, including shrimp. This will become an opportunity for other countries to boost shrimp exports to the US market, including Vietnam. According to data from the US Department of Agriculture, breaded shrimp exports from Vietnam to the US in the first 5 months of this year reached 4,281 tons, worth 30.9 million, up 53% in volume and 48% in value compared to the same period in 2018. In the context of shrimp export to the US declined, the growth rate of this product can be considered a positive sign.
Vietnamese shrimp exports to China went up by 10% to nearly US$47 million in June 2019. In the first six months of this year, exports to this market slipped by 4.9% to US$233.5 million. Vietnam shrimp exports to China tremendously declined in 2018 and in the first months of 2019 due to a sharp increase in Chinese shrimp imports from India, Ecuador (lower price than Vietnamese shrimp). In the first quarter of 2019, Chinese shrimp imports from India increased by 624% in volume and 573% in value over the same period in 2018. In the first half of this year, Ecuadorian shrimp exports to China rose by 224% in volume and 185% in value compared to the same period in 2018.
Vietnamese shrimp exports to China has shown signs of increasing in May and June. India has passed the main harvest, thus Vietnam shrimp export to China is expected to decrease less. The export value of the whole year to this market is likely equivalent to 2018.
Vietnam shrimp exports in the coming months are expected to inch up thanks to the effects of the Trade Agreement, the US-China trade war, the high demand for imports from other markets in the second half and reducing in competition from India.