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Vietnamese rice makes inroad into European market

22 November 2023

VOV.VN - Local rice has been consumed in the European market without any rice shipments exported to the highly lucrative market being warned during the past two years.

Vietnamese rice is sold at French supermarkets (Photo: Loc Troi Group)

This information was released at a recent conference on regulations and commitments on sanitary and phytosanitary measure (SPS) in the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA).

Ngo Xuan Nam, deputy director of SPS Vietnam Office, said that at present the nation joined the World Trade Organization (WTO) more than 16 years ago, alongside 19 free trade agreements (FTAs) and officially signing 16 agreements. Among them, many are considered to be new generation trade agreements.

After these agreements were signed, Vietnamese agro-forestry-fishery exports to EU member states were promoted.

For many years, the country’s export value has always reached several high milestones, especially over the past two years when export value hit more than US$ 50 billion, with this figure expected to rake in over US$54 billion this year.

In particular, in August, 2020, the EVFTA helped to promote two-way agricultural exports between Vietnam and EU countries.

Most notably, major commodity industries such as seafood, rice, fruit, and some food products are also bolstered for exports to the EU market. In contrast, the Vietnamese side has also imported a number of products originating from animals and plants from the EU market.

According to Nam, for Vietnamese rice products being exported to the EU market in recent years, under the direction of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and through the direction of local authorities, no Vietnamese rice shipments exported to the EU market have been warned.

​“Thus, the quality of Vietnamese rice fully meets the requirements of this demanding market. In particular, the EU market is one of the markets that requires a lot of very high standards but we can still meet them," Nam added.

According to statistics released by the General Department of Customs, Vietnamese rice export turnover reached 7.1 million tonnes with a value of US$3.46 billion last year, marking an increase of 13.8% in volume and a rise of 5.1% in turnover compared to 2021.

The average export price stood at US$486.2 per tonne, down 7.7% compared to the average level recorded in 2021.

Although it only accounts for a small proportion of 2.45% of total exports, the European market has enjoyed strong growth of up to 90.7% compared to 2021, duly reaching 172,200 tonnes.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, rice exports in the first half of the year to several markets in the EU grew at three-digit rates such as Poland which increased by 117%, Belgium up by 165%, and Spain up by 308%.

Regarding export rice prices, the average price throughout the reviewed period reached an estimated US$539 per tonne, up 10% over the same period from last year. However, rice exports to the EU often saw prices many times higher than this average number.

The EU is a potential export market for many types of Vietnamese agro- forestry- fishery products moving forward thanks to the market size of more than 500 million people and the growing consumer demand for agricultural and food products, along with the commitment to reduce most of tariffs in the short roadmap under the EVFTA, Nam continued.

However, this is also one of the most fastidious markets with very high animal and plant quarantine regulations and strict control, especially with agro- forestry- fishery products.

According to many experts, the trend of the EU market is to increase technical barriers when reducing tariff barriers.

Along with government regulations, the EU market also offers numerous standards and certifications from consumer associations, non-governmental organisations, and retailers in which businesses that want to export must comply with as global standards on food safety requirements.

Source : VOV