Farmers harvest tea in nothern province. (Source: doanhnghiepvathuongmai.vn)

Hanoi (VNA)
- Tea exports in the past 11 months reached 118,000 tonnes, bringing home 197 million USD, increasing 7.1 percent in volume and 4.3 percent in value compared to the same period last year.

Of these, the export volume of Vietnamese tea in November is estimated at 12,000 tonnes with a turnover of 21 million USD, according to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

However, the tea price for exports in the first ten months decreased nearly 14 percent compared to the same period last year to 1,656 USD per tonne on average.

According to the Vietnam Tea Association (Vitas), export value for the whole year is expected at 235 million USD, with 46 percent from green tea and 53 percent from black tea.

Top importers of Vietnamese tea include Afghanistan, Indonesia, Russia, Pakistan, Taiwan, the US, mainland China, the UK and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Pakistan was the top consumption market of Vietnamese tea in the first ten months of the year, accounting for 34 percent of market share. Export volume to the market increased 1.8 percent but declined 8.7 percent in value compared to the same period last year.

Markets whose tea imports increased include China, Indonesia and Malaysia.

The association also predicted that tea export volume would increase by 10 percent next year. However, according to Vitas, to meet the expectation, cooperation between central and local relevant agencies is required, such as planning tea plantation land and processing units with suitable capacity.

The association also suggested tight control for safe tea production, as well as supporting policies for enterprises and farmers in production, investment and material purchase.

The Hai Quan (Customs) newspaper quoted Nguyen Thi Anh Hong, Vitas Vice President, as saying that ASEAN is becoming a more important market for the Vietnamese tea sector.

In the last five years, Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore have always been in the top 10 importers of Vietnamese tea. However, Indonesia imports lower grade tea compared to the two other countries, but with a larger volume.

Besides the three countries, Thailand is emerging as an important importer of Vietnamese tea, she said.

Among tea importers, Pakistan remains a stable import market. Meanwhile, export to Taiwan’s market faced a lot of difficulties due to the exceptionally strict conditions on residues in plant protection products. However, the problem was solved after the MARD’s National Agro-Forestry Fisheries Quality Assurance worked with the Taiwan side. Taiwan raised the permitted residue levels, therefore, tea exports, especially, jasmine tea, to the market have improved, she added.-VNA