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Archive for March, 2013

Vietnam tuna industry face challenges in 2013 !

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

Vietnam tuna exports in 2012 have posted a double growth of 50 percent from 2011 and reached US$569 million although economies in some main tuna importing countries are already in recession. In 2012, tuna landings of three main provinces went up sharply; raw tuna imports to carry out the processing contracts signed with foreign partners edged up; Declining in tuna catches in some other tuna producing countries gave advantages to Vietnam and high demand from tuna consumer markets are important factors in boosting tuna exports of Vietnam. According to Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), tuna catches in three main central provinces in 2012 were estimated to gain over 19,000 MT, up 80.95 percent year on year. In addition, tuna exports from Philippines and Thailand saw a decrease due to contraction of raw tuna. Thus, in 2012, thanks to high tuna catches, Vietnam tuna processors had enough raw materials for processing and gained more advantages compared to neighboring countries. However, in 2013, Vietnam tuna industry will face difficulties in improving quality, ensuring raw material supply and in consumer markets. At the beginning of 2013, tuna catches reported by provinces were on the upward trend. But tuna catches this year are projected to dwindle due to unfavorable weather conditions. Global tuna consumption in 2012 remains stable, even higher in main consumers (the U.S., EU and Japan) despite ongoing sovereign debt crisis in Europe and bleak global economy. However, in 2013, European economies remains fragile which badly affected trade activities in the region. In 2013, Vietnam will be close to become an official member of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC). Thus, Vietnam is forced to control more closely tuna fishing activities and preservation of tuna stock. Seafood exports in the first quarter of 2013 was at the same time with Chinese New Year holiday, so tuna exports are expected to reach US$130 million, up 1.7 percent over QI/2012 and down 0.8 percent over QIV/2012. Total tuna exports in the whole 2013 are projected to achieve over US$580 million, up 2.3 percent over 2012. Besides EU, tuna exports to the U.S. in 2013 will encounter more hardship but tuna export value to new markets such as Asia, the Middle East will increase by 20- 60 percent over the previous year.

Source: VASEP

Germany is still a potential market of Vietnam tuna

Friday, March 22nd, 2013

In 2012, Ecuador doubled its canned tuna volumes to Germany to keep the top position in tuna supply to the market. The Philippines, which had been the market leader since 2009 – fell to the second. Thailand, Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Seychelles and the Netherlands are the next ones in the list of leading tuna exporters to Germany.

As of Jan 2013, within the EU block, Germany is the largest importer of Vietnam tuna. Since 2009, Vietnam mainly exported processed/canned tuna products to the market with the value proportion of 82.9 percent. However, the figure was small on par with Germany’s total canned tuna imports.According to report from Centre for the Promotion of Imports from developing countries (CBI), Germany’s fresh tuna imports from developing countries made up about 40 percent of total imports. In which, imports from Sri Lanka took 51 percent, Yemen with 26 percent and Philippines with 7 percent. Three these countries were also main tuna exporters to the market.

During 2006 – 2011, developing countries’ fresh tuna volumes to Germany dropped from 213 MT to 28 MT in 2011, less than 86 percent. As a result, Germany strengthened buying tuna from EU members to compensate for the shortage. In contrast, Germany’s frozen tuna imports from developing countries increased by 40 percent from 45 MT to 63 MT in 2011 with the proportion of 33 percent in total frozen tuna imports to the market.
Vietnam and Indonesia have been two main suppliers of frozen tuna for Germany since 2007. Developing countries mostly supplied yellowfin, albacore and bigeye tuna for the market.

Tuna market in Germany depends mostly on imported tuna, domestic tuna production made up 21 percent. In the near future, it is expected that Vietnam exporters can remain and expand their market share in the market.

Source: Vasep

U.S. Department of Commerce Issues An Unlawful & Punitive Final Determination in Frozen Fish Fillets Antidumping Case

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

The US DOC has issued its final determination in the 8th administrative review of the antidumping case on fish fillets, making an unlawful and politically motivated decision to levy punitive duty rates on Vietnamese fish exporters in excess of 100%.

This radical departure from 8 years of legal precedent relates to the use of a new surrogate country, Indonesia, to value inputs of raw materials used in fish processing. Because Vietnam is considered to be a “non market economy” by the US Government, the US DOC uses third country prices to value Vietnamese inputs.

Indonesia has been rejected in prior reviews due to poor data quality and lack of viable financial statements. The DOC itself declared that Indonesia is not “economically comparable” to Vietnam for a majority of the months covered by the review period, and then barred Vietnam from citing to this decision on the untenable position that it was “new information.”

In the final results, the DOC based its valuation of whole live fish prices – the primary input in the fish fillet case – on one Indonesian government pricing study which showed radical fluctuations in pricing and was not based on actual prices, but on calculated national averages from a handful of districts.
The DOC engineered this punitive result after intense political lobbying on behalf of the US domestic industry, the Catfish Farmers of America (CFA). There was no attempt to hide the multiple high-level meetings and lobbying efforts made on behalf of the CFA directly to the DOC. It clearly draws into question the fairness of the process and the alleged “neutral” nature of the DOC decision-makers. Vietnamese respondents have fully cooperated with DOC through multiple on-site verifications and the filing of full and complete responses and data over nearly 18 months.

For the past 8 years, the DOC has consistently used Bangladesh to value Vietnamese fish inputs, continually rejecting Philippines and Indonesia due to the poor quality of the pricing data, the lack of publicly available financial data, and the fact that these countries have no exports to other countries. No material changes had been made to these facts in this review.

Bangladesh is farming Pangasius Hypophthalmus in ponds like Vietnam. Producers in the two countries share the reasonably comparable production cost and revenue. While Indonesia farms five different catfish species. Thus, there is even no specific data in its output of Pangasius Hypophthalmus.

In fact, the DOC continued to follow this well-reasoned policy even through the most recent new shipper review, published only a few weeks ago. There was no record evidence in the 8th review that Indonesia had improved its position as a viable surrogate country or that the data was any more reliable. We must therefore believe that domestic politics played a very obvious role in this decision.

The final duty rates for the reviewed companies – although not effective until a final determination is made – average between $0.19/kg and $1.34/kg, with all other separate rates companies receiving a $0.77/kg duty rate. These exceed 100% in additional duties. These rates effectively bar the reviewed Vietnamese exporters from the US market and are punitive, not remedial.

VASEP, together with individual fish exporters and the relevant trade remedy bureaus of the Vietnamese Government are studying all options in addressing this punitive result and its legality under U.S. law and the WTO. Further, there will be a comprehensive review of its impact on bi-lateral relations.

Source: VASEP

Vietnam’s top 10 pangasius import markets in 2012

Tuesday, March 5th, 2013

In 2012, Vietnam exported its pangasius to 142 nations and territories, increasing from 136 ones in 2011, reaching value of US$1.744 billion, decreasing by 3.4 percent compared to 2011.

The top 10 main markets included: EU, the U.S., ASEAN, China and Hong Kong, Mexico, Brazil, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Colombia and Australia, occupying 77.5 percent of total pangasius export value. Among them, up to 7 markets reduced pangasius imports with the biggest drop in exports to EU and Saudi Arabia fell most sharply. The 3 remaining markets including the U.S., China and Hong Kong, Egypt respectively increased 8.2 percent, 31.5 percent and 29.1 percent, however, the increases was much lower in comparison with previous years.

Source: Vasep