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Coffee exports record biggest 8M increase

Released at: 16:54, 05/09/2016

Coffee exports record biggest 8M increase

Photo: Duc Anh

Coffee the best export performer among agriculture products in first eight months.

by Minh Tuyet

Coffee exports recorded the highest year-on-year increase among agriculture products in the first eight months of the year, rising 39.9 per cent to 1.27 million tonnes worth $2.25 billion, an increase of 20.7 per cent, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

The average export price of coffee in the first seven months was $1,754 per tonne, down 14.5 per cent year-on-year. Germany and the US were Vietnam’s two largest coffee export markets, with market shares of 15 per cent and 13 per cent, respectively.

Though coffee exports have seen dramatic growth since the beginning of the year most is low quality with low value, triggering concerns among domestic enterprises about losing export market share.

Mr. Nguyen Nam Hai, Standing Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Coffee - Cocoa Association (Vicofa), told local media that, in recent years, large foreign-invested enterprises (FIEs) have purchased most of Vietnam’s coffee beans as they can utilize advantages from borrowing US dollars at low interest rates from foreign banks.

They then exchange the US dollars into Vietnam dong to buy coffee in Vietnam, Mr. Hai said. Domestic enterprises, he added, cannot compete with such tactics.

The maximum interest rate on US dollar loans to FIEs in Vietnam is only 3 per cent per annum, while domestic enterprises are subject to 6.5 to 7 per cent per annum on Vietnam dong loans.  

Domestic enterprises have proposed the government establish a coffee fund to support domestic coffee manufacturers and businesses, similar to the models adopted in Brazil, Colombia and India.

Export turnover of agriculture, forestry, and fisheries in August was estimated at $2.76 billion, bringing the eight-month figure to $20.06 billion, an increase of 5.6 per cent year-on-year.

Export value in the first eight months was estimated at $9.9 billion, up 5.7 per cent compared to same period last year. Seafood export value was about $4.3 billion, an increase of 4.1 per cent, while forestry exports were $4.54 billion, down 0.5 per cent.

Pepper saw the second-highest increase in the period, of 30 per cent in quantity and 12.6 per cent in value. Some exports declined year-on-year, including rice, which fell 16.6 per cent in quantity and 13.1 per cent in value.

Others saw quantities increase but value decrease, such as rubber, up 10.4 per cent and down 4.6 per cent, and tea, up 6.6 per cent and down 0.3 per cent.

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