Dong Thap helps fish exporters amid lower demand during COVID-19 hinh anh 1Dong Thap province is focusing on helping fishery businesses with their exports, as COVID-19 continues to dampen foreign demand and fishery production. — (Photo: VNA)

Dong Thap (VNS/VNA) – The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Dong Thap province is working with the Department of Industry and Trade to help fishery businesses enter countries that have signed free trade agreements with Vietnam as demand has fallen due to COVID-19.

The province is also examining export activities to propose solutions to ministries and authorities about exporters' problems.

Due to difficulty in selling their harvests, farmers are incurring losses of 1,000-6,500 VND (0.04 – 0.28 USD) per kilo of fish.

Huynh Tat Dat, deputy director of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, said that COVID-19 is affecting shark catfish exports, with the price of raw catfish around 18,000-18,500 VND per kilo, which is 4,500 VND less than the same period last year.

The price may not improve in the second quarter of the year.

Most processing businesses are using much of their cold storage because raw material sources remain abundant with fewer exports.

Fishling production is also facing difficulties due to slow consumption of commercial shark catfish, which has reduced the price of fishlings. In addition, farmers are not refilling their farms after harvests as much as they usually do.

The price of snake heads has dropped to 24,000-25,000 VND, which is 12,000 VND cheaper year-on-year.

The province has 4,000 hectares of land for fisheries, mainly shark catfish, snakehead and red tilapia. There are 20 fishery processing businesses in Dong Thap, providing jobs for around 21,000 workers./.