The ministries in charge of trade and agriculture have jointly pledged to promote exports of seafood and farm produce, reducing obstacles holding back these sectors.

A memorandum of understanding to this effect was signed at a conference in Hanoi on June 3 between Minister of Industry and Trade, Vu Huy Hoang, and Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Cao Duc Phat.

Vietnam earned 8.92 billion USD from shipping the products abroad in the first five months of this year, up 12.75 percent against the same period in 2013.

However, production and exports are facing a number of difficulties, such as diversification of products, markets and standards for exports.

Minister Hoang reiterated the government’s instructions on the restructuring of export items and markets, which focuses on developing traditional markets, expanding new ones.

Regarding China, an important trade partner of Vietnam, Hoang stressed the need to develop trade with the country while maintaining a trade balance with the neighbouring market.

At the conference, businesses voiced their difficulties regarding export regulations, particularly quality standards for the export of tra (pangasius) fish.

They proposed the state management agencies receive more comments from businesses to issue better policies.

Nguyen Huu Dung, General Secretary of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Processers and Exporters, suggested the government introduce an additionally levied tax worth 1 US cent per kilo of export tra fillet in order to promote trade activities for the product.

According to Dung, the measure, which the association proposed 10 years ago, was applied in Norway, New Zealand and Australia.-VNA