Vietnam's $10 billion export target for shrimp is ambitious but achievable.
While many factors will come into play, ensuring a stable supply of high-quality produce and diverse, value-added products will be crucial to meeting the target set by prime minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, said Truong Dinh Hoe, general secretary of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Processors, and Dang Quoc Tuan, deputy general director of Vietnam-Australia Seafood Corporation.
"It will need great efforts, not just from shrimp farmers and seafood processors, but from the government," said Hoe. "The investment will be needed in the whole chain: post-larvae, feed, seasonal planning, aquaculture methods, processing technology and seeking and expanding markets."
The boom of shrimp production in India, the recovery of productivity in Thailand after early mortality syndrome and the development of the shrimp industry in Indonesia have put great pressure on the Vietnamese shrimp industry, he said.
"However, Vietnam can reach its target if we stabilize our high-quality shrimp supply, maintain tiger prawn [black tiger shrimp] production and keep our customers in large markets like the US, Japan, the Republic of Korea and Australia. Increasing production and diversifying value-added shrimp products will push up value and raise our competitive capacity."
Tuan, meanwhile, pointed to Vietnam's free trade agreements with Japan, the Republic of Korea, Russia and Australia, which he said were difficult markets.