Meanwhile, exports of these seafood products to Japan, China, Brazil and the ASEAN bloc have increased significantly in the first eight months of the year, according to the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP).
In the first eight months of this year, the value of Vietnam’s shrimp exports to the US was nearly US$416 million, down 4.4% over the same period in 2016. The US has dropped from being the largest export market for Vietnamese shrimp in 2006 to fourth place now.
According to the association the reduction was mainly due to the impact of the US Department of Commerce (DOC) increasing antidumping duties in the preliminary determination of the 11th administrative review (POR11) for Vietnam’s shrimp on the US market.
In addition, strong competition from India - the main competitor for Vietnamese shrimp in the US market, has contributed to the current situation.
Therefore, while demand for shrimp in the US market usually increases by the year-end because it is a holiday season, a corresponding increase in Vietnam’s shrimp exports to this market is unlikely.
A similar situation applies to tra fish. Because of the catfish inspection programme that started in August 2017, Vietnam’s tra fish exports to the US reduced 58.5% month-on-month to US$18.44 million and 54.8% year-on-year.
The Vinh Hoan Joint Stock Company, one of Vietnam’s largest tra fish exporters to the US, saw a reduction of about 50% in exports of the fish in August.
Moreover, in early September, the DOC announced it would impose an anti-dumping duty of US$2.39 per kilogramme on frozen tra fish fillets which were imported from Vietnam between August 1, 2015 and July 31, 2016, following its POR 13. The rate was three times higher than the rate at POR12.
According to the local tra fish businesses, this was an unfair decision that has hurt them. The high antidumping duty and the catfish inspection programme will prevent local businesses from promoting tra fish exports to the US market in the future.
The VASEP said that by the end of this year, Vietnam’s tra fish exports to the US market would continue to decrease.