Five-month agro-forestry-fishery trade surplus nearly 3.3bn USD hinh anh 1Processing shrimp exports at Minh Phu Seafood Corporation in Ca Mau (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - The agro-forestry-fishery sector recorded a trade surplus of close to 3.3 billion USD in the first five months of 2020, a decline of a mere 2.3 percent year-on-year.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), shipments overseas during the period brought in nearly 15.5 billion USD, down 4.1 percent year-on-year.

Exports of key farm produce, husbandry products, fisheries, and forestry products earned approximately 7.4 billion USD, 210 million USD, 2.6 billion USD, and 4.2 billion USD, respectively. All were down year-on-year, by between 1.5 and 19 percent.

Most products saw lower export revenue compared to last year, with earnings for tra fish, rubber, fruit, shrimp, peppercorn, and tea falling sharply. By contrast, shipments of coffee, rice, vegetables, cinnamon, and bamboo and rattan posted higher value.

China remained Vietnam’s largest export market in the January-May period, with 3.7 billion USD. Despite showing a decline of 15.5 percent year-on-year, the figure accounted for 23.8 percent of Vietnam’s total export value.

Following was the US, with around 3.4 billion USD, the EU with some 1.6 billion USD, ASEAN with nearly 1.6 billion USD, and Japan with approximately 1.4 billion USD.

MARD forecast that farm produce exports will improve in the time to come but still face a range of difficulties.

It therefore plans to work closely with the Ministry of Industry and Trade to monitor domestic prices, ensure a supply-demand balance and food security, and sustain exports. It will also provide regular updates on markets hit by COVID-19, while focusing on clearing technical barriers and expanding trade with the EU, the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), the US, and Brazil, among others. Preparations are in place to welcome EU and US inspectors to check on Vietnam’s fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing and Vietnamese tra fish safety, respectively.

Meanwhile, the import value of agro-forestry-fishery products in the first five months stood at 12.2 billion USD, a decline of 4.5 percent year-on-year. Apart from vegetable oil, wheat, and husbandry products, all imported goods, particularly fertilizer, pesticides, animal feed, and corn, posted lower value in the period./.