Pangasius was the sector hardest hit by Covid-19 in the fisrst two months of 2020
In January and February exports to China and Hong Kong were down 32% in volume, and 52% bu value, reaching USD 28.4 million, according to VASEP. The prolong Lunar New Year, combined with the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic caused pangasius export to biggest market of 2019, China, to be stopped. The number of orders that Vietnamese firms got in February and March 2020 were only 30% of 2019’s.
However, since the middle of March, after the disease situation was better controlled, Chinese customers have started to place orders again, goods circulation has begun to restart. Since April 2020, pangasius export to the China-Hong Kong is likely to stabilize gradually.
For the first two months of the year exports to the US reached USD 38.6 million, down nearly 25 percent year on year. Sales to the EU have not been seriously impacted, but export value was only USD26 million, down 40 percent year on year. The average price of pangasius sold to the EU was also down.
In March, Covid-19 has all shut down the German, Italian and UK markets, key buyers of Vietnamese pangasius – all but halting trade. Meanwhile, in early March, an abnormal drought situation happened in the Mekong Delta, seriously affecting raw material pangasius farming area. Farmers in some localities have stopped production to insufficient water and irrigation conditions for the new crop.