Unfreezing market for businesses amidst COVID-19

Ministries, agencies and localities have adopted a range of measures to remove difficulties faced by businesses and people amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.

Hanoi (VNA) – Ministries, agencies and localities have adopted a range of measures to remove difficulties faced by businesses and people amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.

Unfreezing market for businesses amidst COVID-19 ảnh 1Businesses prepare plans to minimise the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak (Photo: VietnamPlus)

The effects of COVID-19 have rippled through many production and export sectors in Vietnam that have heavily relied on imported materials and consumption markets.

Many sectors face difficulties

After the Lunar New Year (Tet) festival, the COVID-19 outbreak began to affect the consumption of some agricultural products like dragon fruit and water melon.

[Vietnam's agriculture sector surpasses many goals in 2019]

The Mekong Delta province of Dong Thap is expected to suffer from great impacts of COVID-19 if the outbreak continues its spread, as most of its agricultural products are shipped to China, said Nguyen Huu Dung, Director of the provincial Department of Industry and Trade.

Therefore, products like sweet potato (11,000 tonnes), chilli (6,700 tonnes) and longan (1,200 tonnes) may remain unsold, he said.

Ha Le Thanh Trung, Deputy Director of the Department of Industry and Trade of the central province of Binh Thuan, said up to 7,685 tonnes of dragon fruit are being kept in cold storages, instead of being shipped abroad.

Apart from farm produce, the epidemic has also affected domestic production and business activities.

Nguyen Thanh Tung, Director of Ha Tay Chemical Weave Co., Ltd, said his company can maintain operation only for the first months of the year. For the long term, it will have to suspend.

Unfreezing market for businesses amidst COVID-19 ảnh 2Goods being traded at Tan Thanh border gate in Lang Son province. (Photo: VietnamPlus)

Nishitohge Yasuo, AEON Vietnam General Director, also expressed his concern over the scenario when the outbreak lasts longer and develops complicatedly.

AEON Vietnam experienced reductions from 20-30 percent in the number of customers as from February, he said.

Unfreezing the market

Tran Thi Phuong Lan, Deputy Director of the Hanoi Department of Industry and Trade, said materials imported in late 2019 can help businesses run in the first quarter of this year.

However, they have to seek for other sources of materials as Chinese suppliers have yet to resume their operation due to the outbreak.

However, this solution is not permanent as the price of materials from new markets is often much higher than that from China, plus high transportation cost and long transportation time, she added.

Given this, the Hanoi Department of Industry and Trade has coordinated with cities and provinces to review food, and agro-fishery products that may not be exported to sell them in the domestic market.

It has also called on distributors, supermarkets and food supply chains in the city to join these efforts.

Minister of Industry and Trade Tran Tuan Anh on February 17 agreed to issue an action plan of the MoIT in response to COVID-19, along with a range of solutions.

He asked for the establishment of a working group led by a Deputy Minister and in charge of handling issues relating to the disbursement of imports and exports with China.

The minister urged the MoIT’s Export-Import Department to hold working sessions with the Ministry of Agricultural and Rural Development and certain associations to identify the volume and types of agricultural products stuck, forecast agricultural output in the time ahead, and report to the ministry for settlement. 

It is a must to keep a close watch on export via border gates and urge provinces bordering China to work with the Chinese side to identify specific measures in order to ensure customs clearance, he said.

In the domestic market, the minister asked the Domestic Department to coordinate with relevant agencies to promptly boost supply-demand connectivity, thus promoting the consumption of agricultural products, while working with distributors in this regard./.


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