Statistics from the General Department of Customs showed that the US remained Vietnam’s largest footwear importer as of late May with US$1.99 billion, up 13.9% year-on-year and accounting for 35.2% of Vietnam’s total footwear export value.
The European Union (EU) ranked second with US$1.76 billion, up 9.7% annually and making up 31.15 percent of the total. It was followed by China (US$418.4 million), Japan (US$284.4 million), the Republic of Korea (RoK) (US$158.3 million). Those five markets accounted for 83.3 percent of Vietnam’s earnings from footwear export.
The US also took the lead in buying Vietnam’s handbags, suitcases and briefcases, spending in excess of US$555 million, up 6% and making up 41.1% of Vietnam’s shipments of those products. Behind the US was the EU (US$365 million), Japan (US$146.5 million), China (US$57.6 million), the RoK (US$52.8 million). The five top markets accounted for 87.2 percent of the total export value of handbags, suitcases and briefcases of Vietnam.
Nearly 80 percent of Vietnam’s leather product and footwear export value comes from factories located in the south, the southeast and the southwest regions. Ho Chi Minh City and the southern provinces of Binh Duong and Dong Nai are currently the largest footwear and handbag producers.
In the north, most leather and footwear factories are concentrated in Thanh Hoa, Hai Phong, Hai Duong, Hanoi, Ninh Binh and Thai Binh. In the central region, only Da Nang city and Quang Nam province have some large-scale production facilities.
In the first half of the year, the leather and footwear sector earned 8.7 billion USD from exports, marking a 11 percent increase, including 7 billion USD from footwear and 1.65 billion USD from handbags and suitcases, up 12 percent and 4 percent, respectively.
It is forecast that the total earning this year will hit 17.8 billion USD, up 10 percent annually.
The LEFASO suggested that firms join manufacturing chains at home, in the region and the world while adopting advanced technologies and exploiting advantages offered by free trade agreements in which Vietnam is a member.