VietNamNet Bridge – The decision by the US Department of Commerce (DOC) to lower the anti-dumping tax rates on tra fish fillets imported from Vietnam is really the heartening news for Vietnamese seafood exporters, because it would pave the way for more tra fish to enter the US market.
Tra fish exports would soar
Under this decision, the DOC, choosing Bangladesh as the sole replacement country--in calculating the anti-dumping rate; decided to impose a rate of 0.00 dollar per kilo on Vietnam’s Vinh Hoan company’s products and 0.03 dollars per kilo on 12 other companies.
The decision was made after the seventh preliminary results of the administrative review (POR7) for anti-dumping duties on tra fish fillets imported from Vietnam
Truong Dinh Hoe, Secretary General of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), said that if Vinh Hoan had sent an appeal to DOC, the company would have been able to enjoy the permanent tax rate of zero percent from the POR8. However, as Vinh Hoan had not done this, it would still have to undergo another administration review.
Also according to Hoe, the latest decision would benefit Vietnamese exporters, because it would pave the way for Vietnamese tra fish exporters to obtain new contracts with big values, especially at the upcoming Boston seafood trade fair on March 11-13.
Hoe went on to say that with the decision, Vietnam can see big opportunities not only in the US market, but in the European market as well. Before DOC released the decision, European importers tried to delay conducting negotiations with Vietnamese exporters, because they believed that the anti-dumping tax rates would be still high, which would allow them to force the prices down. Now, as the tax rates have been slashed, Vietnamese exporters would have larger markets; which means that they have the advantages to re-negotiate the prices.
VASEP tells farmers not to hurry to sell fish
Farmers nowadays tend to bargain fish away after hearing the news about the big debts incurred by Bianfishco, a big seafood company. Local newspapers reported that the debt could be as high as 1.5 trillion dong (71.8 million dollars).
Though Bianfishco acting general director Tran Van Tri, the husband of the general director, stated that his family would sell 80 percent of stakes to pay debts, doubts still have been raised about the solvency of the company, since the volume of shares being held by the company is less than 80 percent.
Farmers rush to sell fish at this moment, because they fear that the Bianfishco’s problems would cause a domino effect and they would not be able to sell fish. However, farmers have been reassured that other seafood companies still keep operating which would need big amount of materials for processing, as the export markets have been enlarged.
Some farmers reportedly lower the sale prices to 24,000 dong per kilo, which is lower than the production cost. However, VASEP has told the farmers to keep calm and not to get panic at this moment. They should keep the fish in ponds and wait for the prices to go up.
The association said that more export contracts would be signed in one or two months. By that time, the demand for fish would increase rapidly, and it may happen that the sale prices would skyrocket due to the lack of materials.
VASEP has estimated that the amount of tra fish materials is just about 200,000 tons, or just 17 percent of the total yearly output of 1.2 million tons. The figure is not big; therefore, farmers should not worry that their fish would be unsalable.
“The export markets would be much better in the upcoming months, by that time, the demand would escalate. Therefore, it would be a blunder if farmers sell fish right now at low prices,” Hoe said.
Source: Dat Viet