It is forecast that Vietnam’s tuna exports cannot have a good signal in the beginning months of 2023 when the world economy is possible to fall into recession this year.

Mrs. Nguyen Ha, a tuna market expert of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers, said that in January 2023, Vietnam’s tuna exports continued to decline sharply following the trend of the last quarter of 2022. Tuna export turnover this month was just over 50 million USD, down 43% over the same period in 2022.

Processing tuna for exports.

Accordingly, the decline took place in most commodity groups, except for processed tuna other than code HS16 (mainly frozen steamed tuna). In particular, exports of frozen tuna code HS0304 decreased the most by 55%, while exports of fresh/frozen and dried tuna decreased by 54% and canned tuna decreased by 46%.

2022 is the year that marks Vietnam’s tuna industry when it brings in an export turnover of more than one billion USD, up 34% compared to 2021. However, this growth is due to strong growth in the first three quarters of 2022. By the fourth quarter of 2022, under the impact of inflation, Vietnam’s tuna export to main markets decreased and this trend continued to happen in the first months of 2023. Exports to major markets in January 2023 also fell sharply.

Vietnam’s tuna import market structure this month has been unstable. It is noteworthy that there is an export growth to new markets such as Korea or Taiwan with a growth of 457% and 105% respectively over the same period.

The US is still the largest tuna export market of Vietnam, but the proportion of this market decreased compared to the previous year. The export value of tuna to this market in January 2023 only reached more than 16 million USD, down 63% over the same period last year. Although inflation in the US has been down, concerns about another economic recession are causing Americans to tighten their spending. This is affecting the US’s tuna imports from other countries.

Along with the US, the EU also recorded a sharp decline in the first month of the year, falling by 42%, reaching nearly 9 million USD. This decrease has caused the proportion of this market to decrease and the EU to fall to the third position among the largest importers of Vietnamese tuna. The key tuna export markets in this group in January were Germany up 25%, the Netherlands down 52%, and Spain down 52%.

Meanwhile, exports to Israel recovered with an impressive growth rate of nearly 80% over the same period.

In the CPTPP market, Vietnam’s tuna exports in Jan increased only slightly by 6%. Although tuna exports to Canada-the largest import market in this bloc were down to 29%, exports to Japan and Peru increased by 38% and 53% respectively.

From the above fact, VASEP forecasts that Vietnam’s tuna exports in the first months of the year cannot achieve a good result when the world economy possibly falls into recession this year. It is expected that tuna exports will increase in the second half of the year./.