(seafood.vasep.com.vn) After a period of slowing growth, Vietnam's tuna exports dropped in September of 2019. Among the 8 largest tuna importers of Vietnam, more than half of the markets had import value lower than the same period.
Specifically, according to the statistics of Vietnam Customs, tuna export value in September reached US$53 million, down 2.4% compared to the same period in 2018. However, thanks to the positive growth in previous month, the total tuna export value in the first 9 months of 2019 still increased by 15.4% over the same period in 2018, reaching nearly US$547 million.
Vietnamese tuna exports to the US in September continued to maintain a positive growth rate, up 39% compared to September 2018. With this growth rate, the proportion of the US market in total tuna exports of Vietnam is also increasing.
According to experts, Vietnam is benefiting from the US-China trade war. In the first 9 months of 2019, export of processed tuna (except for HS 16), of which mainly frozen skipjack/yellowfin tuna loin went up by 184% compared to the same period in 2018. Canned tuna exports increased by 32% while frozen tuna loin HS0304 increased by 51%.
Vietnamese tuna exports to the EU tend to decrease. Particularly in September, tuna exports to the EU declined by more than 33%. Therefore, the total value of Vietnamese tuna exports in the first 9 months of 2019 still slid by nearly 10%, reaching more than US$106 million.
By the end of September 2019, the 3 largest tuna importers of Vietnam in the EU had changed. Spain is currently leading with a proportion of 3.6%, with import value reaching nearly US$20 million in the first 9 months of 2019, followed by Italia at 3% and Netherlands at 2.0%.
Notably, in September, Vietnamese tuna exports to these markets went down simultaneously. Particularly, thanks to good growth in the previous months, so in the first 9 months of 2019, Vietnamese tuna export value to Italia still increased by 25.8% over the same period.
Among Vietnamese tuna export products to the EU, only live/fresh/frozen and dried tuna HS code 03 (except frozen tuna loin HS0304) increased over the same period in 2018. Exports of other tuna products all declined.
Vietnamese tuna exports to ASEAN in September decreased by 24% after continuous growth in the previous 2 months.Therefore, the total tuna export value of Vietnam in the first 9 months still decreased by 4.4% over the same period, reaching US$37.5 million.
The decline in Vietnamese tuna export value to this market is due to a decrease in exports to Thailand, the largest importer in the bloc. This year, Vietnamese exports of fresh, frozen and dried tuna products to Thailand have increased sharply by 122%. Meanwhile, processed tuna exports, the main export item of Vietnam, decreased 21% over the same period.
Contrary to the trend of Vietnamese tuna exports to ASEAN, exports to Japan in September continued to rise. Tuna export value of Vietnam to this market lifted by 19.4% compared to September 2018, As a result, the total tuna export value to Japan in the first 9 months increased by 7.3% compared to the same period in 2018.
Most Vietnamese tuna export products to Japan all climbed over the same period in 2018, except for frozen tuna loins HS0304. In 2018, frozen tuna loin code HS0304 was the main export item of Vietnam to Japan, in 2019 other processed tuna products are dominating. The export value of other processed tuna products accounted for more than 46%. Besides, the export of canned tuna to Japan also tends to increase.
Given this situation, it is expected that tuna exports in the last months of 2019 will likely continue to decline.