Although being a poor continent and very unequal among countries, Africa is a strong attractive market with high seafood demand thanks to its revenues of precious natural resources export and abundant population.
In the term of foreign trade with Africa, Vietnam has excess of imports over exports. While other markets in the world tend to saturate or strengthen measures of protection through applying technical barriers, African market is opening up opportunities and prospects. So far, seafood is among export categories with high turnover in this market.
Since 2000 – 2003, only a few African countries have imported Vietnamese seafood with not great amount from 5 – 150 MT per year such as South Africa, Central Africa, Nigeria, Libya, Algeria, Angola, etc. Seafood export volume to Africa increased gradually in 2007 like Egypt (7,000 MT), Nigeria (1,300 MT).
In 2009, Egypt remained the largest market in Africa for Vietnamese seafood with 29.6 thousand MT, worth US$60.4 million, followed by Algeria 2,800 MT, South Africa 767 MT, Libya 620 MT and Morocco 364 MT.
In the first 8 months of 2010, Egypt has imported over 16 thousand MT of seafood (mostly live, fresh, frozen shrimp; processed black tiger shrimp; live, fresh, frozen whiteleg shrimp, pangasius, mollusk from Vietnam, followed by Algeria 1,900 MT, Nigeria 1034 MT, Libya 407 MT, South Africa 223 MT.
Currently, Vietnam’s exported categories structures to Africa are diversified increasingly due to market demand is growing, requirements for quality and design are not too strict. Pangasius is popular in the continent. The largest import markets are Egypt, Nigeria, Algeria and Tunisia.
Most countries in Africa are developing countries or less developed ones so the demand for imported goods to meet the production and consumption is very large. Its import turnover continues to increase and tends to increase strongly in next time.