If the export growth continues to slow down, Hong Kong and China may replace the US to become key consumers of Vietnam catfish, VASEP forecast.
In last December, exports to the US just reached US$33.2 million, US$1 million lower than the export value got from China.
According to statistics from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), US imports of frozen catfish fillets gradually increased during the first half of 2016 with around 8,000-12,000 tons per month. The import price was US$2.65-3.25 per kilo, but as from August it began to decline to US$2.76 per kilo and even to US$2.6 per kilo in September.
The US Department of Commerce reported that US catfish import value fluctuated last year and hit a record high in February. However, it might be reversed in the same month this year.
VASEP predicted Vietnam catfish exporters would face more challenges and difficulties on the US market this year because of high anti-dumping duties, the US catfish inspection programme and some other trade barriers.