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Taking advantage of FTAs, Vietnam shrimp exports to Japan increased

(11/15/2019 12:00:00 AM)

Japan maintained the second largest shrimp importer from Vietnam in the first 3 months of 2019, accounting for 19.7% of the total export value of Vietnam shrimp. In the first three months of this year, Japan was the only market among the major importers for Vietnamese shrimp that recorded positive growth. Vietnamese shrimp exports to Japan in recent years increased thanks to good demand and advantages from trade agreements between Vietnam and Japan.

In March 2019, Vietnam shrimp exports to Japan reached over US$54 million, an increase of 4.3% compared to March 2018. In the first quarter of 2019, shrimp exports to the market reached US$121.7 million, up 1.4% year on year. Japan was the only market in Vietnam’s top eight shrimp importers to increase shrimp imports from Vietnam in the first quarter of this year. In the second quarter of 2019, it is expected that Vietnam shrimp exports to Japan will go up by about 5% to about US$297.9 million.

Some Vietnamese shrimp products exported to Japan included:  white-leg shrimp (peeled, headless, tail off, frozen boiled – HS code 16052990), White leg shrimp  (peeled, frozen breaded size TR-20 , TR-30, TR-40, KF-41, 10 Y-20B - HS code 16052930), frozen Nobashi white-leg shrimp (HS code 03061721), frozen PD white-leg shrimp (21/25, 31/40, 51/60, 61/70 -HS 03061722). In March/2019, the price of shrimp products (HS code 16052990) exported from Vietnam to Japan ranged from US$8.2-11.9/kg, the price of shrimp (HS code16052930) ranged from US$5.9-7 /kg.

Vietnam was the largest shrimp supplier to Japan, accounting for 25.6% of the total value of shrimp imports into this country. For years, Vietnam has maintained its No. 1 position in supplying shrimp to Japan thanks to its advantages over other suppliers in the Japanese market. ASEAN–Japan Comprehensive Economic Partnership (AJCEP) took effect from December 1, 2008 and the Economic Partnership Agreement between Vietnam and Japan (VJEPA) come into effect from October 1, 2009. Those FTA agreements created favorable condition for export of Vietnamese seafood to Japan thanks to preferential tariffs.

Under Japan’s commitment to Vietnam in VJEPA. Since 1/4/2019, shrimp products (HS code 030617) imported into Japan from Vietnam are exempt from tax. Besides, the exempted processed shrimp products when imported into Japan from Vietnam from Apr 1st, 2019 included (HS code 160521011- boiled shrimp, chilled, frozen, no airtight bag), HS code 160521019, 160521029 160529010 and 160529029.

In addition to the Vietnam - Japan and ASEAN - Japan FTAs, the CPTPP Agreement, that took effect from January 2019, will also help Vietnamese shrimp to increase its advantage in this market. According to Japan's commitments at CPTPP, most of Vietnam's key seafood products including frozen shrimp (HS code 030617) and processed shrimp (HS code 160521) are entitled to 0% tax rate right after the agreement comes into effect.

As Japan's ready-to-eat food industry grows, processed shrimp products with high usability will grow well in the Japanese market. It is expected that in 2019, processed shrimp products circulated into Japan will grow more than 10% compared to 2018.

VIFEP (Vasep)

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