Agro-forestry-aquatic product exports were estimated at $20.26 billion in the first five months of 2023, down 11.1% year on year, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).
Meanwhile, the country’s imports also dropped 8.7% to $13.15 billion, resulting in a five-month trade surplus of $3.55 billion, falling 21.1% from a year earlier.
In May alone, exports stood at $4.85 billion, down 3.5% from the same period last year, statistics showed.
The MARD said shipments to major markets such as China, Japan, and other Asian countries are gradually regaining growth. However, due to global economic uncertainties, high inflation in some developed countries, and tightened monetary policy in some big markets like the U.S. and E.U., businesses are seeing difficulties in seeking and fulfilling orders.
Of the five-month export revenue, farm produce brought home $10.3 billion, up 9.9%; animal products $190 million, up 34.5%; aquatic products $3.47 billion, down 25.9%; and forestry products $5.52 billion, down 26.8%.
Many products recorded higher export values than in the same period last year, including rice up 49%, fruits and vegetables up 39%, cashew nuts up 5.5%, meat and by-products up 59%, and coffee up 0.2%. Meanwhile, some products witnessed declines such as rubber down 24%, tea down 19%, peppercorn down 10%, cassava, and related products down 14.3%, tra fish down 40.7%, shrimp down 34.4%, and timber and wood products down 27.3%.
Vietnam posted growth only in exports to Asia, up 2.3%. In contrast, shipments to others decreased, including the Americas down 34.6%, Europe down 13.2%, Africa down 5.6%, and Oceania down 28%.
China, the U.S., and Japan remain the biggest markets of agro-forestry-aquatic products from Vietnam during the five months. Exports to China accounted for 20.4% of the total, rising 2.9% year on year; the U.S. 19.8%, down 35.2%; and Japan 7.8%, down 1.2%, the MARD noted.