Cashew nut exports up 1 percent in H1 hinh anh 1Vietnam’s cashew exports increased by 16 percent in volume and 1 percent in value year-on-year in the first half of 2020 (Photo: VNA)

HCM City (VNS/VNA) - Despite the difficulties posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Vietnam’s cashew exports in the first half of the year increased by 16 percent in volume year-on-year and 1 percent in value to 232,000 tonnes and nearly 1.53 billion USD, according to the Vietnam Cashew Association (VINACAS).

The US, EU and China had been the biggest markets.

Exports to the US increased by nearly 10 percent in terms of value and accounted for 32 percent of the total.

Exports to China fell by nearly 44 percent and accounted for 8 percent.

Average prices were 14 percent down.

According to experts, due to falling prices, some customers sought to renegotiate them and also demanded more in terms of quality and traceability.

This year too domestic prices were higher than export prices at some certain times, causing difficulties for businesses, they said.

Exports remained good in the first half, but the rest of the year is a big question since cashew is not an essential or irreplaceable product and no one knows how the pandemic situation would pan out, they added.

The association said: “The cashew industry targets exports of 450,000 tonnes this year for 3.2 billion USD. VINACAS always hopes to exceed export targets.”

Vietnam imported 635,000 tonnes of raw cashew for processing in the first half, a year-on-year decrease of 12 percent mainly due to a delay in transporting it from West Africa countries to Vietnam because of the pandemic and lower demand.

VINACAS continues to pursue a policy of reducing quantity and increasing quality in imports of raw nuts and exports of processed products.

According to figures the International Nut and Fried Fruit Council and the Global Cashew Council announced at an online conference in June, global output in the 2020-21 crop is estimated to reach 3.72 million tonnes, 21,000 tonnes down from the previous one./.