Export turnover of agro-forestry and aquacultural products is expected to reach 13.5 billion USD in the first half of this year, down 1.7 percent from the same period last year, said the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).

The decrease is attributed to the year-long downward trend in global demands and prices of agriculture products.

Major agricultural products raked in an estimated 7.59 billion USD, down 10.5 percent, while forestry products brought home 2.31 billion USD, up 12.4 percent; and earnings from aquacultural products stayed at the same level as last year at 2.88 billion USD.

Most export staples such as rice, coffee, rubber, tea and cassava saw decreases in both price and volume. Coffee suffered the highest reductions, dropping 24.2 percent in volume to 795,000 tonnes and earning only 1.71 billion USD, 22.4 percent less than the figure of the same period last year.

Export of cassava also witnessed a deep decrease during the first six months of the year, bringing home 693 million USD, down 14.5 percent.

Only cashew and pepper showed increases in both export amount and price. Cashew exporters earned 723 million USD by exporting 115,000 tonnes of cashew, an increase of 5.7 percent in turnover and 15.9 percent in amount.

The US, China and Netherland remain Vietnam’s biggest cashew importers.

Pepper export went up 22 percent in volume and 16.8 percent in turnover, in comparison with the same period last year.

From now to the end of the year, the MARD urged relevant agencies were urged to keep track of the domestic and global demand and supply; give priority to expanding export markets, enhancing trade promotion activities; while coordinating with businesses and associations to propose policies to boost export and tap potential markets.-VNA