According to the tuna export enterprises in Khanh Hoa Province, in January, they saw a an increase of 3-5 times in tuna import orders and even 10 times compared to December 2020, especially the US market.
Nguyen Thi Thu Thanh, director of Bền Vững Seafood Co, Ltd, said the company received many orders to export tuna to the US in January. However, the local companies have faced shortage of raw materials for processing export tuna products due to strong reduction in tuna output in many countries such as India and Singapore. This has led to higher price of raw tuna.
At present, the price has surged to US$5 per kilo of tuna from $3.5 in November 2020. Le Buu Quoc, head of the Thịnh Hưng Co, Ltd’s Procurement Department said that the higher price of imported raw tuna and affects from the COVID-19 pandemic have pushed the price of tuna up in the domestic market. But the businesses still have to buy the material with high price for processing export products.
Quoc said the company has received many orders to export tuna products to the US, mainly for supermarkets while restaurants in the US, especially high-end restaurants, are not reopened.
In the situation of the COVID-19, the export orders to the US have helped the company to maintain stability in production. Meanwhile, export price has increased by about 4 per cent compared to the previous month.
T&H Nha Trang Co, Ltd is also receiving many orders for tuna export from many markets. Therefore, this company has also increased the purchasing price of tuna to VND115,000 per kilo to encourage fishermen to catch tuna.
Huynh Dac Tri, director of the T&H Nha Trang Co, Ltd, said the tuna export markets are under normal operation, excluding the European market that is still tightly controlled. Of which, fresh tuna products from Vietnam are consumed stably.
“The US market has not reduced demand. Therefore, the domestic tuna exporters are increasing to purchase raw material of tuna for meeting export contracts because they have faced a serious shortage of raw materials,” said Tri.
Nguyen Trung Hieu, head of the Management Board of the Hon Ró fishing port and the South Central Coast seafood market, said in January, most of the tuna fishing vessels achieved higher output than the previous month.
Specifically, each fishing vessel caught from 30-40 units of tuna fish in average, or 1.2-1.5 tonnes, especially event to 50-80 units of tuna or 2-3 tonnes. Purchasing price of tuna is ranging from VND110,000-115,000 per kilo, an increase of about VND10,000-20,000.
According to the Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), in 2020, the COVID-19 created a great impact on the global tuna industry in general and the Vietnamese tuna industry in particular.
VASEP said that tuna exports in 2021 could not recover due to complicated developments of COVID-19.
Currently, the pandemic is not under control and moreover there is a risk of a rebound, so the global tuna market is expected to not yet recover.
However, the EU market with EVFTA will continue to be the lever for Vietnam's exports of tuna products, such as canned tuna, fresh and frozen tuna, to the EU market in 2021.
Vietnam gained a total export value of $649 million in 2020 from exporting tuna to 108 markets in the world. The value reduced by 9.8 per cent year on year.
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