(vasep.com.vn) If last year, Spain was Vietnam's third largest tuna import market in the EU, this year this market has dropped out of the top. Tuna exports to Spain have continuously declined. Accumulated in the first 8 months of 2023, tuna exports to Spain decreased by 49% compared to the same period in 2022, reaching more than 7 million USD, this is the lowest level in the past 5 years.
Among Vietnam's exported tuna products, exports of pre-cooked tuna loins with code HS16 decreased the most by 88% over the same period. Along with that, Vietnam's exports of frozen tuna meat/loin products with code HS0304 to this market also decreased by 29%. On the contrary, exports of canned tuna products increased dramatically by 602%, but the value proportion is still very low.
One of the reasons why Spain reduced tuna imports from Vietnam is due to low consumer demand. The rising price of raw tuna, olive oil and tin cans... has pushed up the price of final tuna products. This has reduced the average tuna consumption per capita in the country to an all-time low of 2.02kg/person. According to statistics from the World Trade Center (ITC), Spain's tuna imports in the first half of 2023 decreased by 5% over the same period, reaching nearly 665 million USD.
Vietnam is currently the 12th largest tuna supplier to this market. While Spain reduced tuna imports from Vietnam, it increased imports except from China and Indonesia. Enjoying 0% tax incentives under the autonomous tariff quota (ATQ), cheap tuna products, especially pre-cooked tuna loins, from China are dominating this market. In addition, this year due to the decrease in fishing output at the Spanish fleet's fishing grounds, the lack of supply of high-value raw tuna, such as hand-caught tuna, has caused the country to increase imports. from other sources of supply, including Indonesia.
Currently, inflation in Spain is still not under control, inflation in this country has increased from 2.4% to 3.2% in September 2023. Therefore, it is expected that tuna consumption demand in this country will not recover immediately in the last months of this year. And this will cause Vietnam's tuna exports to here to remain at a low level.