Exports of pangasius inching up
The export value of pangasius is inching up since August 2020. Sales to China – Hongkong, the Netherlands and the UK increased well in October.
As of October 2020, the total export value of pangasius reached $1.2 billion, down 26% as compared to the same period last year. Among top ten buyers of Vietnamese pangasius, the UK has been a spotlight with consecutively positive growth since earlier this year.
China – Hongkong
In the first ten months of the year, that total export value of pangasius to this market reached $428.3 million, accounting for 35.3% of the total sales of pangasius and decreasing by 18% as compared to the same period last year. Even though a decline has been recorded in the export value since the outbreak of coronavirus, demand for pangasius has inching up; since October 2020 when importers have ramped up their purchases including the National Day. This move has driven an increase in prices of pangasius material in the Mekong Delta and the average exporting price. Vietnam saw an increase in the number of pangasius companies selling to China in October, with the export value to this market reaching $80 million, accounting for 47% of the total pangasius exports. However, Chinese companies are struggling with a large amount of unsold stocks of white meat fish and tilapia, resulting in some policies issued by the Government to reduce seafood imports in the next few months.
In October, the pangasius export value to this market slightly decreased by 4.8% as compared to the same period last year, with a worth of $23.3 million. By the end of October 2020, Vietnam has brought in $196.7 million from exporting pangasius, down 15.5% as compared to the same period last year. The US has experienced challenges in politics and economics, thus, seafood suppliers do not expect or raise any hope of a remarkable growth in the last months of the year. As forecasted, pangasius export value to the US market will decrease by 15% from last year.
Even though ASEAN didn’t suffer from the COVID-19 pandemic as much as the US or some EU countries did, the demand for white meat fish of ASEAN countries has been falling since February. Many countries saw a decline in pangasius imports as compared to the same period last year. By the end of October 2020, the total pangasius export value to ASEAN had reached $113.3 million, down nearly 31% as compared to the same period last year. Exports to Thailand decreased by 25.6%, Singapore decreased by 4.9% and Malaysia decreased by 28%.
The UK was the highlight of the picture of pangasius exports in 2020. By the end of October 2020, pangasius exports to this market had been consecutively increasing. Among the top buyers of Vietnamese pangasius, the UK was the unique market that didn’t experience any slump due to the COVID-19 pandemic or other reasons. In October 2020, pangasius export value to the UK reached $5.36 million, up 58% as compared to the same period last year. By the end of October, Vietnam brought in nearly $57 million from exporting pangasius to the UK, up 29.3% as compared to the previous year. This year, there are more Vietnamese companies selling pangasius to the UK than to the EU countries.